Arun Jaitley, Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Government of India, presented the union budget for 2018-2019 today. Here are some of the most significant points that you should know about. In a shift of tradition, Jaitley delivered the speech in both English and Hindi.
- Income tax rates and slabs have not been changed. However, tax-payers get exemption of Rs. 40,000/- under transportation and medical allowances.
- President’s salary hiked to 5 lakh a month, Vice President’s to 4 lakh a month, Governor’s to 3.5 lakh a month.
- The deduction on medical insurance premium has been steeped to Rs. 50,000/- for senior citizens. Senior citizens with critical illnesses are eligible for a deduction of Rs 1 lakh.
- Fiscal deficit for 2017-2018 is 3.5%, expected fiscal deficit for 2018-2019 is 3.3%
- Rs 2000 crore set for investment on agricultural market and infrastructure.
- Rs 500 crore allocated for Operation Green- promoting Farmer Producers Organizations, agriculture logistics, processing facilities.
- Government to implement minimum support price for all crops- prices hiked to 1.5 times the cost of production.
- Credit target for agriculture increased to 11 lakh crore from 8.5 lakh crore.
- Rs 10,000 crore each allocated for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development Fund and Animal husbandry infrastructure fund respectively.
- Rs. 1 lakh crore allocated to revitalize and upgrading education sector. Government to increase digital influence on education; aims to shift to digital fully by 2020.
- 1000 B.Tech students to be identified each year by the Government to pursue Ph.Ds in IIT and IISc. research fellows will also teach undergraduate students once a week during this time.
- Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana likely to be extended until March 2020, with an increase in limit to Rs 15 lakh per senior citizen.
- 4 crore people to get free power connections under Saubhagya Yojana scheme.
- 8 crore women to get free LPG connections under Ujjwala Yojana.
- Rs 5,750 crore allocated for National livelihood scheme, the government can spend 14.34 lakh crores for creating livelihood in rural areas.
- EPF- Government to contribute 12% of wages of new employees for all sectors, for the next 3 years.
- EPF contribution reduced to 8% for women for the next 3 years.
Petrol and diesel:
- Excise on unbranded petrol at 4.48 Rupees per liter
- Excise on unbranded diesel at 6.33 Rupees per liter
Live Coverage from the Lok Sabha – Union Budget 2018-19 https://t.co/ty740gs010
— Arun Jaitley (@arunjaitley) February 1, 2018