Minister of Finance, Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Budget for 2023-24. in her speech she said, The union budget hopes to build on the foundation laid in the previous Budget, and the blueprint drawn for India@100. We envision a prosperous and inclusive India, in which the fruits of development reach all regions and citizens, especially our youth women, farmers, OBCs, Scheduled Castes, and Scheduled Tribes.

 Highlights of the Union Budget 2023-24

  •  Per capita income has more than doubled to Rs 1.97 lakh in around nine years.
  • The Indian economy has increased in size from being 10th to 5th largest in the world in the past nine years.
  • Seven priorities of the Budget, ‘Saptarishi’, are inclusive development, reaching the last mile, infrastructure and investment, unleashing the potential, green growth, youth power, and the financial sector
  • The outlay for PM Awas Yojana is being enhanced by 66 percent to over Rs 79,000 crore.
  • Capital outlay of Rs 2.40 lakh crore has been provided for the Railways, which is the highest ever and about nine times the outlay made in 2013-14.
  • 30 Skill India International Centres to be set up across different states to skill the youth for international opportunities.
  • Revamped credit guarantee scheme for MSMEs to take effect from 1st April 2023 through the infusion of Rs 9,000 crore in the corpus. This scheme would enable additional collateral-free guaranteed credit of Rs 2 lakh crore and also reduce the cost of the credit by about 1 percent.
  •  The maximum deposit limit for Senior Citizen Savings Scheme is to be enhanced from Rs 15 lakh to Rs 30 lakh
  • The fiscal Deficit is targeted to be below 4.5 percent by 2025-26.
  • Rs 10 lakh crore capital investment, a steep increase of 33 percent for the third year in a row, to enhance growth potential and job creation, crowd-in private investments, and provide a cushion against global headwinds.
  • Rs 15,000 crore for implementation of the Pradhan Mantri PVTG Development Mission over the next three years under the Development Action Plan for Scheduled Tribes.
  • Investment of Rs 75,000 crore, including Rs 15,000 crore from private sources, for 100 critical transport infrastructure projects, for last and first-mile connectivity for ports, coal, steel, fertilizer, and food grains sectors.
  • New Infrastructure Finance Secretariat was established to enhance opportunities for private investment in infrastructure.
  • National Data Governance Policy to be brought out to unleash innovation and research by start-ups and academia.
  • *PAN will be used as the common identifier for all digital systems of specified government agencies to bring in Ease of Doing Business.
  • ‘Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats & Tangible Incomes’, MISHTI, to be taken up for mangrove plantation along the coastline and on salt pan lands, through convergence between MGNREGS, CAMPA Fund, and other sources.
  • To commemorate Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, a one-time new small savings scheme, Mahila Samman Savings Certificate, to be launched. It will offer a deposit facility of up to Rs 2 lakh in the name of women or girls for the tenure of 2 years (up to March 2025) at a fixed interest rate of 7.5 percent with a partial withdrawal option.
  • A fiscal deficit of 3.5 percent of GSDP allowed for states of which 0.5 percent is tied to power sector reforms.
  • The fiscal deficit is 6.4 percent of GDP for the current fiscal, adhering to the Budget Estimate.
  • The gross market borrowings for 2023-24 are estimated at Rs 15.4 lakh crore.
  • To further improve taxpayer services, a proposal to roll out a next-generation Common IT Return Form for taxpayer convenience, along with plans to strengthen the grievance redressal mechanism.
  • The rebate limit of Personal Income Tax is to be increased to Rs 7 lakh from the current Rs 5 lakh in the new tax regime. Thus, persons in the new tax regime with income up to Rs 7 lakh are not to pay any tax.
  • Tax structure in the new personal income tax regime, introduced in 2020 with six income slabs, to change by reducing the number of slabs to five and increasing the tax exemption limit to Rs 3 lakh.
  • The highest surcharge rate was reduced from 37 percent to 25 percent in the new tax regime. This to further result in a reduction of the maximum personal income tax rate to 39 percent.
  • The limit for tax exemption on leave encashment on the retirement of non-government salaried employees is to increase to Rs 25 lakh.
  • The number of basic customs duty rates on goods, other than textiles and agriculture, reduced to 13 from 21.
  • Markets end on a mixed note on Budget day; Sensex climbs 158 points, Nifty slips 46 pts
  • Rupee falls 2 paise to close at 81.90 against the US dollar on Budget day

Budget for States

  • 50-year interest-free loan scheme to continue for one more year
  • Provisions made for the creation of capital assets through Grants-in-Aid to States
  • Incentives to undertake urban planning reforms
  • Incentives through PM-PRANAM to promote alternative fertilizers


  • 500 new ‘waste to wealth’ plants under the GOBARDhan scheme to be established
  • Total investment of Rs 10,000 crore
  • A 5 percent compressed biogas mandate is to be introduced for all organizations marketing natural and biogas

Union Budget 2023-24: Civil Aviation Ministry’s allocation dips

The Civil Aviation Ministry witnessed a significant decline in its allocation in Budget 2023-24 presented on Wednesday. The Budget allocated Rs 3,113.36 crore to the ministry, against Rs 10,667 crore in 2022-23, which was later revised to Rs 9,363.70 crore.

Centre to hire 38,800 teachers for Eklavya Model Residential Schools

The Central government will hire 38,800 teachers and support staff for Eklavya Model Residential Schools in the next three years, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced in her budget speech on Wednesday. The Finance Minister said that the government will also open 157 new nursing colleges.

Sitharaman said that the Centre will also launch the Pradhan Mantri PVTG Development Mission to improve the socio-economic condition of the particularly vulnerable tribal groups. She further said that an amount of Rs 15,000 crore will be made available to implement the Mission in the next three years.

Life insurers stare at 10-12 pc hit on top-line

The Budget has left the life insurance industry a worried lot with the new tax proposal on higher premium annuity products, a move which the industry fears will hit their top lines by 10-12 percent.

Leading private life insurer HDFC Life’s chief executive Vibha Padalkar told PTI that she stares at a 10-12 percent hit on the company’s top-line with the Budget proposal to tax life products having annual premiums of over Rs 5 lakh.

She also fears that the increased tax exemption bracket of Rs 7 lakh and the steep reduction in the maximum surcharge on the affluent to 39 percent from 42.74 percent earlier may nudge them to spend more and save less.

Rupee gains 8 paise against US dollar on Budget day

The rupee appreciated 8 paise to close at 81.80 against the US dollar on Wednesday after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget for 2023-24. Fresh foreign capital inflows supported the domestic unit, forex traders said. However, investors stayed cautious ahead of the outcome of the US Federal Reserve meeting later in the evening, they added. At the interbank foreign exchange market, the rupee opened at 81.76 against the greenback and finally settled at 81.80, up 8 paise over its previous close.

Per capita income more than doubled since 2014

The per capita income in India has more than doubled to Rs 1.97 lakh over the past nine years. “The government’s efforts since 2014 have ensured for all citizens a better quality of living and a life of dignity,” Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in her Budget speech on Wednesday. In these nine years, the size of the Indian economy has increased from being tenth to the fifth largest in the world.

Information and broadcasting ministry gets Rs 4,692 crore

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday announced a Rs 4,692-crore outlay for the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for 2023-24 as against Rs 4,182 crore in the revised estimates for the last fiscal. The allocation to the government’s autonomous body, Prasar Bharati, has been increased to Rs 2,808.36 crore from Rs 2,764.51 crore allotted to it in the last fiscal.

 Govt hikes import duty on toys to 70%

The government on Wednesday increased the import duty on toys and their components to 70 percent with a view to cutting inbound shipments of these products and boosting domestic manufacturing activities. Similarly, import duty on bicycles has also been hiked to 35 percent from 30 percent, according to a Union Budget document.

 Oil cos to get Rs 30,000 cr for holding petrol, diesel prices

The Union Budget for 2023-24 will dole out Rs 30,000 crore to state-owned fuel retailers to make up for the massive losses they ran because of holding petrol and diesel prices despite the rise in cost in a bid to help the government contain inflation.

Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL), and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) haven’t changed petrol and diesel prices since April 6, 2022, despite input crude oil prices rising from USD 102.97 per barrel that month to USD 116.01 per barrel in June and falling to USD 80.92 per barrel this month

Railways to introduce Vande Metro, Hydrogen train by December

Vande Metro trains will be the mini version of the Vande Bharat Express trains. While the Vande Bharat trains did not get a mention in the finance minister’s speech, the announcement of a mini version of it was the highlight of Vaishnaw’s post-budget press conference.

Railways minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said that Vande Metro will offer a rapid shuttle-like experience for passengers. “This year the design and production will be completed, and in the next financial year, a ramp-up of production of the train will be done,” he added.

Vaishnaw also said India will get its first Hydrogen train by December 2023 which will be completely indigenously manufactured. It will initially be run on heritage circuits like Kalka-Shimla.

 Jal Jeevan, Swachch Bharat Missions get major budget boost

  • The Union Budget on Wednesday enhanced allocation to the government’s ambitious Jal Jeevan Mission by 27 percent to Rs 69,684 crore for 2023-24, from Rs 54,808 crore in the current fiscal.
  • Swachh Bharat Mission-Rural, which aims to make the country open defecation free (ODF) free, also received a boost in allocation of Rs 77,000 crore for 2023-24, up from Rs 60,000 crore in 2022-23 – a hike of 28 percent.

Payments abroad to get costlier

The government on Wednesday proposed to hike the TCS rate to 20 percent from 5 percent currently on overseas tour packages. Foreign remittance for education/maintenance is likely to be costlier due to this, said Nangia Andersen India Partner Amit Agrawal.

The hike would pose challenges for people intending to go for foreign travel and who wish to invest in overseas stocks as it will increase their immediate outlay, according to Amit Maheshwari, Tax Partner at Tax and consulting firm AKM Global.

Allocation for Minority Affairs Ministry reduced by over 38 percent

  • The budgetary allocation for the Minority Affairs Ministry has been reduced by over 38 percent to Rs 3097.60 crore for 2023-24 as compared with the last fiscal
  • The budget allocation for 2022-23 was Rs 5020.50 for the ministry, however, the revised estimate was Rs 2612.66, as per the documents.
  • Of the proposed allocation to the ministry, Rs 1,689 crore is for education empowerment.
  • Over 64.4 crore has been allocated for Skill Development and Livelihoods.
  • The Budget estimate for the umbrella program for the development of minorities is Rs 610 crore.

Life insurance cos fall on taxation proposal

Shares of life insurance companies tumbled by up to 11 percent on Wednesday after the government announced to limit income tax exemption from proceeds of insurance policies in certain cases. ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company dropped 10.97 percent to close at Rs 402.55 on the BSE. HDFC Life Insurance Company Ltd fell 10.96 percent, Max Financial Services Ltd slumped (9.45 percent), SBI Life Insurance Company Ltd (9.31 percent), and Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) (8.38 percent).

According to Union Budget documents, an individual will have to pay tax on the maturity amount of life insurance policies where the aggregate annual premium exceeds Rs 5 lakh.

Education ministry gets highest ever allocation

  • The Education Ministry has been allocated the highest ever Rs 112899.47 crore in the budget.
  • The total budgetary allocation for higher education has gone up to Rs 44,094.62 crore compared to Rs 40,828.35 crore in 2022-23.
  • One hundred labs for developing apps using 5G services will be set up in HEIs
  • In 2023-24, the grant for the UGC has been increased by 9.37 percent — an increase of Rs 459 crore.
  • The grants to Central Universities have been increased by 17.66 percent, deemed universities by 27 percent, support to IITs has been increased by 14 percent, and to NITs by 10.5 percent as compared to 2022-23.
  • Also IISC, Bangalore’s grant has been increased by 15 percent.
  • In 2023-24, for the Prime Minister Research Fellowship (PMRF) an amount of Rs 400 crore has been provided as compared to Rs 200 crore in 2022-23 — that is a 100 percent increase.

Stocks of cigarette cos slump on a hike in taxes

Shares of most cigarette companies ended in the negative territory on Wednesday after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a hike in taxes on cigarettes in the Union Budget by about 16 percent.

The stock of Godfrey Phillips plunged as much as 5.31 percent to settle at Rs 1,821.15 on the BSE. NTC Industries declined 4.65 percent to close at Rs 85.15. In addition, VST Industries slipped 2.02 percent to Rs 2,961.4 and Golden Tobacco declined 1.54 percent to Rs 60.8. Shares of ITC witnessed wild swings, before finally settling with a gain of 2.61 percent at Rs 361.45.

Fully imported cars, including EVs, to cost more

Prices of imported vehicles with invoice values less than USD 40,000 are expected to go up by around 2 percent with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman proposing to increase customs duty on such vehicles from 60 percent to 70 percent in the Union Budget 2023-24. The Budget also outlined that customs duty on vehicles, including electric vehicles, in Semi-Knocked down (SKD) form will rise to 35 percent from 30 percent earlier

Rs 19,518 cr allocated to metro projects

A senior official said the total budgetary outlay for year 2023-24 for all metro projects stands at Rs 19,518 crore. The allocation in 2022-23 was Rs 19,130 crore.

Silver to get expensive

Silver and silver jewelry will become expensive as the government on Wednesday announced increasing the basic customs duty on silver, both in dore and semi-manufactured form, to 10 percent in order to curb imports. Currently, the basic customs duty on silver dore is 6.1 percent, while on silver unwrought or semi-manufactured items it is 7.5 percent.

Subsidies on fertiliser reduced by 22 pc, food 31 pc

  • Subsidies on fertilizer and food for 2023-24 (April-March) have been reduced by 22 percent and 31 percent each
  • Subsidies on fertilizer have been cut from Rs 225,220 crore to Rs 175,100 crore in 2023-24
  • For food, it has been reduced from Rs 287,194 crore to Rs 197,350 crore in 2023-24.

Defence budget up 13% amid border tensions

  • India proposed on Wednesday 5.94 trillion rupees ($72.6 billion) in defence spending for the 2023-24 financial year
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman allocated 1.63 trillion rupees for defence capital outlays
  • She said 2.77 trillion rupees would be devoted to military salaries and benefits in 2023-24, 1.38 trillion on pensions for retired soldiers, and further amounts for miscellaneous items.

CAPF gets lion’s share from Home Ministry’s Budget

  • The total allocation to the MHA this year is 1,96,034.94 crore
  • There has been allocation for improving infrastructure along the international border and modernization of police forces.
  • The majority of total allocation, Rs 1,27,756.74 crore has been given to the CAPFs which is higher than the previous year of 1,19,070.36 crore.
  • The Border Security Force, which guards the borders with Pakistan and Bangladesh, has been given Rs 24,771.28 crore, an increase from to Rs 23,557.51 crore in 2022-23.
  • ITBP got Rs 8,096.89 crore in comparison to 7,626.38 crores given in the current fiscal.
  • The Assam Rifles have been allocated Rs 7,052.46 crore. For the modernization of police forces in the country, Rs 3,750 crore has been given, which is more than the current fiscal’s Rs 2,432.06 crore.



Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *