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Budget Highlights 2024: Rooftop solarisation, housing for middle class, charging of EVs

Feb 01, 2024 12:14 PM IST

Budget Highlights 2024: Sitharaman says the Narendra Modi government overcame those challenges and undertook structural reforms.

Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday presented the interim budget ahead of the end of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. This marks her sixth Budget as the finance minister and the last in the second term of the Modi government. Sitharaman adhered to tradition on Thursday by visiting President Droupadi Murmu before unveiling the pre-election Budget for 2024-25. She met with the President at Rashtrapati Bhawan before proceeding to Parliament.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman with Ministers of State Bhagwat Kishanrao Karad and Pankaj Chaudhary, and other officials.(PTI)
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman with Ministers of State Bhagwat Kishanrao Karad and Pankaj Chaudhary, and other officials.(PTI)

The 2024 interim budget presentation brought forth a slew of transformative initiatives aimed at bolstering various sectors of the economy and addressing pressing societal challenges. From innovative schemes fostering renewable energy adoption to strategic investments in healthcare and agriculture, this budget outlines a vision for inclusive growth and sustainable development.

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Here are the key highlights from 2024 interim budget:

Rooftop solarisation and free electricity: 1 crore households will benefit from rooftop solarisation, providing up to 300 units of free electricity monthly. Expected benefits include savings of up to Rs. 15,000 - Rs. 18,000 and opportunities to sell surplus electricity to discoms.

Charging of electric vehicles: Entrepreneurship opportunities for vendors and employment prospects for youth skilled in manufacturing, installation, and maintenance of electric vehicles.

Promotion of post-harvest activities: Government to promote private and public investment in post-harvest activities, including aggregation, modern storage, supply chains, processing, marketing, and branding.

Read: From Nirmala Sitharaman to TV Somanathan, key faces in ‘team budget’

Expansion of Nano DAP application: Following the success of nano urea, Nano DAP application on various crops will be expanded across all agroclimatic zones.

Housing for middle class: Launch of a scheme to assist deserving sections of the middle class living in rented houses, slums, chawls, or unauthorized colonies to buy or build their own houses.

Expansion of medical colleges: Government plans to establish more medical colleges by utilizing existing hospital infrastructure, with a committee to be set up for examination and recommendations.

Vaccination for girls: Encouragement of vaccination for girls aged 9 - 14 years to prevent cervical cancer.

Comprehensive maternal and child healthcare programme: Various schemes under maternal and child healthcare to be amalgamated into one comprehensive programme for improved synergy in implementation.

Extension of Ayushman Bharat coverage: Extension of healthcare cover under Ayushman Bharat to all ASHA workers, Anganwadi workers, and helpers.

Agriculture and food processing: Intensified efforts in value addition to boost farmers' income, with a focus on reducing post-harvest losses and improving productivity and incomes.

Aatma Nirbhar Oilseeds Abhiyan: Strategy formulation to achieve self-reliance in oilseeds through research, adoption of modern farming techniques, market linkages, and crop insurance.

Dairy development programme: Formulation of a comprehensive programme to support dairy farmers, leveraging existing schemes to enhance productivity.

Matsya Sampada: Promotion of investments in fisheries to generate employment opportunities, with a separate department set up for fisheries under the government's initiative.

Promoting investments: Measures to encourage sustained foreign investment, including negotiating bilateral investment treaties and provision of Rs. 75,000 crores as interest-free loans to support milestone-linked reforms by state governments.

Societal changes: Formation of a high-powered committee to comprehensively address challenges arising from population growth and demographic changes, with recommendations for comprehensive solutions.

Revised estimates for 2023-24: Revised estimates of total receipts other than borrowings is Rs. 27.56 lakh crores, with tax receipts amounting to Rs. 23.24 lakh crores. RE of fiscal deficit stands at 5.8% of GDP.

Tax proposals: Sitharaman proposed not to make any changes relating to taxation and retain the same tax rates for direct and indirect taxes including import duties.

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