Congress violated basic principles of tax, lost exemption : BJP’s Gopal Krishna Agarwal

The BJP on Friday reacted strongly to Congress allegations that the government is targeting it through tax notices and freezing of bank accounts.

“The I-T exemption that parties get is based on certain conditions. Congress has violated the basic condition mandated by EC for tax exemption,” BJP national spokesperson Gopal Krishna Agarwal told ET.

Agarwal said that Congress got cash donations above Rs 2,000, which is against the rule.

“The Congress received Rs 14.5 lakh in cash over Rs 2,000. These violations and late returns cost them their exemption under Section 13(A) of the I-T Act,” he stated.

Once a political party loses tax exemption, all its income becomes taxable and all expenditure under income from other sources is disallowed.

Agarwal further said the IT department issued several notices to Congress, but they didn’t respond.

“The notice of demand for Rs 135 crore tax given to Congress for the assessment year 2018-19 is after the party lost the exemption,” he added.

The BJP leader said that Congress filed an appeal before the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal but didn’t pay the mandatory 20% of the total liability required to hear the matter.

“Congress has gone to appeal in ITAT as well as High Court but all their appeals have been rejected. The matter is in the Supreme Court now,” Agarwal said.

He said that the Income Tax department’s action is based on the incriminating material seized during search operations which indicated extensive usage of cash by the party.

Dark side of election time welfare Promises

The Narendra Modi government has been in office for about 10 years now. It has its share of hits and misses. If the Opposition was sincere and serious, it should have attacked the government for misses, though few and far between, and presented an alternative agenda to the public. Unfortunately, the Opposition has failed to come up with any positive alternative agenda. Instead, with elections on for five state assemblies, the opposition parties are making all sorts of promises in their manifestos.

Most of these poll promises (freebles) can’t be fulfilled. These parties, probably, have no intention to fulfil them there are no provisions in the state budgets or off budget borrowings to fulfil these promises State finances are mostly in the doldrums. The federal structure in India has no provision for bankruptcy of a state, otherwise states such as Punjab and Rajasthan, reeling under heavy debt, may face bankruptcy. They are a big drag on India’s fiscal consolidation roadmap. These election promises can be classified into four categories. One category would consist of such promises that the parties making them have no intention of fulfilment. Such promises could range from giving gold chains to women or the promise of blanket loan waivers to farmers.

The second would be those that need the diversion of precious public resources from productive developmental expenditure to wasteful expenditure. The Congress led government in Karnataka is diverting funds to the tune of 40,000 crore from developmental projects for poll promises. The deputy chief minister of that state is on record saying that the state will have no funds for development expenditure because the funds will go to fulfil poll promises. The extravagant promises by the Congress government in Rajasthan and the BRS government in Telangana, should these parties come back to form the government, will ensure that there would be no money left for capital expenditure.

The third category of promise entails the creation of future liabilities for the public but hiding them from the public through financial jugglery. Delhi is a classic case where under-recovery on the supply of electricity is leading to the creation of regulatory assets Electricity distribution in the city was privatized long back. These private companies are not able to recover costs including a fixed rate of return on capital employed.  This under recovered amount constitutes “regulatory assets in the balance sheets of these private distribution companies. The total figure for FY 2021-22 for the three private power distribution companies comes to 18.578 crore. If we conservatively assume the carrying cost for this amount to be 8% per annum, the annual interest payable to the distribution companies would come to around 1,486 crore. This interest burden will be payable by the electricity consumers of Delhi in the future. During 2004 14,  the United Progressive Alliance government issued oil bonds to the oil marketing companies to the tune of 1.25 lakh crore.  Similarly, there was off bud get borrowing to the tune of 2 lakh crore by the Food Corporation of India These amounts were paid by the Modi government.

The fourth category of promises is a reversal of the measures of economic reform.  Reversion to the Old Pension System (OPS) is non -Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) ruled states is a prime example of this. The New Pension Scheme
(NPS) was a major economic reform of the Atal Bihari Vajpayee led National Democratic Alliance government and had moved the pension liability of the government from being unfunded to fully funded. The benefits of this far-sighted reform were to become evident a few decades down the line. However one state government after the other is jettisoning this together a few extra votes from government employees.

The BJP is working relentlessly to provide fiscally prudent and responsible social welfare schemes and expose the false promises of the Opposition. We believe in empowerment. not entitlement, and the difference is evident in sound current macroeconomic fundamentals like Gross Domestic Product growth, fiscal deficit, inflation and foreign exchange reserves. The point is fiscal resources should be utilised in a targeted way with provisioning in the budget, as government need to spend or diverse areas with fiscal prudence.

Gopal Krishna Agarwal is the national spokesperson of the BJP for economic affairs.

जी-20 के सफलतापूर्वक आयोजन से दिखी भारत की नेतृत्व क्षमता

यदि मजबूत इरादे को लेकर नेतृत्व को लेकर नेतृत्व किया जाए तो कुछ भी असंभव नहीं

हमारा यह दृढ़ विश्वास है कि जब भी और जहां भी उचित हो, श्रेय मिलना ही चाहिए। जी-20 का सफलतापूर्वक आयोजन व दिल्ली घोषणापत्र पर सर्वसम्मति का वैश्विक प्रभाव, भारत की वर्तमान एवं भविष्य की नेतृत्व के लिए भूमिकाओं के रूप में देख सकते है। चंद्रयान-3 की सफलता ने पहले ही भारत की प्रतिष्ठा में चार चांद लगाकर भारत को अंतरिक्ष प्रौद्योगिकी में अग्रणी देश के रूप में प्रस्तुत किया है। हाल में हुई दोनों ही घटनाएं, यह प्रदर्शित करती है कि यदि नेतृत्व में दूरदर्शिता, प्रतिबद्धता व इच्छा शक्ति हो तो बड़ी- बड़ी चीजों को भी हासिल किया जा सकता है।

बचपन में हम पढ़ते थे कि भारत एक अमीर देश है, जहां गरीब रहते हैं इससे हमें यह पता चलता है कि तत्कालीन नेतृत्व किस प्रकार भारतीयों की वास्तविक क्षमताओं को उभारने में नाकाम हुआ था। मोदी के सत्ता में आते ही यह परिदृश्य पूरी तरह से परिवर्तित हुआ है। हमें कई बार महसूस हुआ कि प्रधानमंत्री की कुछ पहल बहुत महत्वाकांक्षी एवं असंभव सी है। तत्पश्चात हमने देखा की यदि मजबूत इरादे को लेकर नेतृत्व किया जाए तो कुछ भी असंभव नहीं है। हम देखते है की हर समय विपक्ष का रवैया आलोचनात्मक व नई पहलों के लिए रुकावट करने वाला रहा हैं, ऐसे में सभी उद्देश्य पूर्ति कोई छोटी उपलब्धियां नहीं हैं। कोविड संकट से निपटना तय समय में सफलतापूर्वक घरेलू वैक्सीन तैयार करना और 230 करोड़ लोगो तक वैक्सीन पहुचाना एक सुचारू प्रशासनिक दक्षता का ही प्रमाण है। कोविड के बाद आर्थिक विकास, आर्थिक सुधार को सटीक समय पर लागू करना, राजकोषीय प्रोत्साहन व महंगाई का सफल प्रबंधन, सरकार की महत्त्वपूर्ण उपलब्धियाँ है। कोविड के बाद विश्व के अमेरिका, यूरोप और चीन जैसे राष्ट्र भी आर्थिक संकट से जूझ हैं जबकि भारत इससे अलग तीव्र गति से आर्थिक विकास पर अग्रसर है। भारत

द्वारा डिजिटल पब्लिक इंफ्रास्ट्रक्चर (यूपीआई) का विकास, जिसका गुणगान आज दुनिया कर रही है, आधुनिक मानव इतिहास में अद्वितीय साबित हो रहा है।

वर्ल्ड बैंक की रिपोर्ट कहती है कि भारत के वित्तीय समावेशन कार्यक्रम ने 47 साल के काम को मात्र 6 साल में पूरा कर दिखाया है। दिल्ली घोषणापत्र में जी-20 देशों द्वारा यूपीआई को अपनाना इस बात की ओर संकेत करते हैं कि वसुधैव कुटुंबकम (विश्व एक परिवार है) और आनो भद्राः क्रतवो: यंतु विश्वतः (हर दिशा से नेक विचार हमारे पास आएं) की हमारी प्राचीन अवधारणा मात्र दार्शनिक कथन नहीं हैं बल्कि प्रधानमंत्री मोदी ने इन्हें अपनी इच्छाशक्ति और दूरदर्शिता से ज़मीन पर लागू करके दिखाया है। विकासशील देशों को वैक्सीन मैत्री कार्यक्रम के तहत मुफ्त टीके उपलब्ध करवाना हो या वैक्सीन पर आईपीआर प्रतिबंधों को दूर करना, प्रधानमंत्री जी का हर एक कदम सराहनीय रहा है। अब जी-20 के माध्यम से भारत अपने डिजिटल इन्फास्ट्रक्चर मॉडल को विश्व के लिए पब्लिक गुड के रूप में प्रस्तुत कर रहा है । इतिहास में यह पहली बार हो रहा है कि किसी वित्तीय कार्यक्रम को आईटी दिग्गजों के व्यक्तिगत लाभ व व्यवसाय के लिए नहीं बल्कि सबकी भलाई के लिए सार्वजानिक रूप से पेश किया जा रहा है। यह एक महत्वपूर्ण भारतीय उपलब्धी है जो कि वर्तमान में सम्पूर्ण विश्व के लिए प्रस्तुत किया गया है। मेरे लिए यह न सिर्फ प्रधानमंत्री का जन कल्याण कार्यक्रम है जो ‘एक राष्ट्र, एक परिवार, एक भविष्य’ का संदेश देता है बल्कि यह कार्यक्रम हमारा ध्यान इसलिए भी आकर्षित कर रहा है क्योंकि यह भारतीय नेतृत्व को वैश्विक पहचान देने का एक जरिया है। घरेलू कनेक्टिविटी वाला बुनियादी ढांचे के निर्माण में निवेश हो या अभी जी-20 समूह के अंतर्गत भारत- मध्य पूर्व यूरोप आर्थिक गलियारे की घोषणा यह भारत में निवेश की सम्भावनाओं को तो बढ़ा रहा है और हमारी व्यापर एवं रणनीतिक सुरक्षा की आवश्यकतों को भी मजबूत करेगा। यह आर्थिक गलियारा न सिर्फ प्रधानमंत्री की दूरदृष्टि और मेहनत का परिचायक है बल्कि स्वेज कैनल व बंदरगाहों के माध्यम से व्यापार मार्ग को सुरक्षित करने के लिए इजरायल और ग्रीस जैसे यूरोपिय देशों से वार्तालाप करने की उनकी सूझबूझ का भी परिचायक है।

भारत – मध्य पूर्व यूरोप गलियारा, चीन के बीआरआई का जवाब है। बीआरआई के तहत एक के बाद एक देश जैसे पाकिस्तान, श्रीलंका व केन्या कर्ज के बोझ तले दबे जा रहे हैं । अब भारत दक्षिण एशियाई देशों की मजबूत आवाज भी बन रहा है और अफ्रीकी देशों के विकास और एकीकरण के स्वर को बुलंद कर रहा है।

गोपाल कृष्ण अग्रवाल,

राष्ट्रीय प्रवक्ता भाजपा

A peaceful India free of disturbances is taking the global centre stage

By Gopal Krishna Agarwal,

This August, we are celebrating the 76th year of our Independence. India now is a much stronger nation, internally as well as externally. This has been possible due to the determination and vision shown by our current leadership.

Apart from its historical import, the month of August has acquired additional significance due to some major milestones accomplished in the recent past, during this month.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has always stood for strong nationalism and keeping national interest above all other considerations. The focus on India First, whether it is in global diplomacy, external and internal security, or economic management, is undiluted. One of the key successes of the government has been the establishment of domestic peace, stability and the elimination of the scourge of terrorism. Home minister Amit Shah has strongly dealt with issues at home – at the core of the BJP’s agenda which bogged down India’s internal security and caused continuous uncertainties and communal tensions in the country.

For decades since Independence, Parliament has been reiterating that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India, but the region continued to be disturbed on the ground, fostering and breeding terrorism.

Pakistan was bent on bleeding India through a thousand cuts. The young were disenchanted and resorted to pelting stones. The Indian leadership knew that removing Article 370 was the right step to ensure national security, but lacked the courage and conviction. The narrative was that once Article 370 is removed, there will be bloodshed in the region, and even attempting to dilute it would invite international backlash.

The way the nullification of Article 370 was handled with surgical precision was unprecedented. On August 5, 2019, the smoothness of the handling of the whole situation involved dealing with cross-border skirmishes and international perspectives through determined operations on the ground. Though no cost is high enough to be paid to maintain the territorial integrity of our motherland, it was deeply satisfying to note that the objective was achieved with little loss of life or damage to public property. Today, there is peace and tranquillity in Jammu and Kashmir and it is on the path of economic development. The PM’s vision and home minister’s acumen accomplished the task.

The Ram temple in Ayodhya was another contentious issue. History tells us that the communal tension in India had its genesis in the demand by Hindus of a grand Ram at Ayodhya. The temple was related to the Asmita and Swabhiman (self respect) of Hindus. This issue led to several riots and the loss of lives. We all dreamt of a grand temple at Ayodhya, with little hope of it being fulfilled. But the adroitness in maintaining law and order before and after the 2019 Ram Janam bhoomi verdict by the Supreme Court underlined the visionary commitment to a cause. Despite the sensitivity of the issue, there were no riots or tension anywhere in the country.

Bhumi pujan (groundbreaking ceremony) for the Ram Mandir” was held on August 5, 2020, and now the grand temple is turning into a reality. There are many such instances, but I will not go beyond the issue of triple talaq. The practice of triple talaq is the bane of Muslim women as they were the primary victims of the politics of appeasement. The vote bank of previous governments went to such of previous governments went to such an extent that gender equality, women  empowerment, and equality before the law as enshrined under our Constitution, were blatantly ignored and the apex court’s decisions g were reversed through a brute majority in Parliament, as seen in the Shah Bano case in 1985. With triple talaq made illegal in August 2019, India’s Muslim women have been empowered. India is truly coming of age as a strong nation. India is now peaceful, free of disturbances, with many of the contentious issues settled, and whose point of view on global issues is being considered with respect. Our image as a strong and no-nonsense nation is now well established. PM Modi, with the able assistance of Shah, is taking India to newer heights.

Gopal Krishna Agarwal is national spokesperson of the BJP

Identification And Resolution Of NPA; Regarding Strength Of Our Banks

Narendra Modi is carrying out economic reforms in the short time available to him and rebuilding a transparent and corruption free business ecosystem, destroyed by crony capitalism under the UPA. The benefits of his decisions will be slow and realized in the years ahead.

In 2014, we inherited feeble macroeconomic parameters in the form of high inflation, slow GDP growth and a weak financial ecosystem. Over the years, the nexus of politicians, financial institutions and corporate world had weakened the foundations of this structure. And, without resolving these issues, we could not have progressed.

There was no middle ground. Either we compromised and continued as such, or demolished the edifice of corruption and built a new structure. Prime Minister Narendra Modi chose the second. The pain was real but so was the malaise.

With unidentified NPA and no surety of what lay beneath the carpet, the job was tough and not for the faint hearted. Even now, the estimated NPAs are of about Rs. 9 lakh crore. Yes, there was scope for a minor deviation, but that wouldn’t have been enough. Instead, with adequate provisioning and sufficient liquidity due to recapitalization, the government has managed to put banks in a position to tide over the crisis.

To understand this better, we must know that NPA has three components. Firstly, there are genuine failures arising out of business risks. Secondly, there’s a large chunk of over leveraged loans. And thirdly, a whole lot of fraud is perpetrated by miscreants in the banking system. Once the gross NPA has been identified, government has to deal separately with each of these three components.

Genuine failures need hand holding and formulation of an exit policy. Fraud requires investigation and penal actions on the criminals, apart from strengthening the control and audit mechanism. Finally, bad quality loans and substandard assets need a very careful resolution so that the confidence in the banking institution is not jeopardized, and the money is recovered.

With new legislation such as the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, and the resolution mechanism under NCLT in place, the banking sector now has the teeth to bring fraudulent corporate houses to book.

The current banking crisis has its genesis in the UPA regime. The previous government had ignored the existence of NPA and brushed the problem under the carpet. Finally, Prime Minister Modi took the challenge head on and tried to resolve it.

Road to $5 trillion

If we are concerned with the economic well-being of the nation, we have to focus on economic growth. Setting a target and working on a roadmap to reach it is the only way to success, and who knows this better than Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In 2014, when Modi came to power, he set up a performance matrix, which seemed far-fetched, but his tireless efforts hit the bull’s eye.

He has caught the bull by the horn on issues such as NPA, corruption, leakages and cleanliness; and effective solutions like the insolvency and bankruptcy code (IBC), GST, demonetization, Jan Dhan accounts and Swachh Bharat Abhiyan have given confidence to the electorate that nothing is impossible — “Modi hai to mumkin hai”.

That spirit continues. For many who believe that India becoming $5 trillion economy by 2024 is a sweet dream; wait, we have the roadmap. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has unleashed it in her maiden budget. The budget is a vision document of the government. It is a major policy statement. In her budget speech, the FM said “it took 55 years for our economy to reach $1 trillion… Our economy was at approximately $1.85 trillion when we formed the government in 2014. Within five years it has reached $2.7 trillion. Hence, it is well within our capacity to reach the $5 trillion in the next few years.”

The Economic Survey has laid down the parameters for achieving this target. It has mentioned that issues like job creation, savings, consumption, demand, should not be looked at in silos. The CEA has said that with the current 7 per cent GDP growth rate, if we accelerate investments and target 8 per cent growth, the $5 trillion economy is well within sight. Investment is the key; others will follow. We will get out of the vicious circle of low liquidity, low demand, low investment, low production and lower growth to the virtuous cycle of investment, savings, production, consumption, demand and growth.

The government has continued its push for infrastructure development so that ease of living is continuously upgraded, with a focus on rural roads, waterways, and low cost housing. The Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana alone has set a target of building 1.95 crore houses. The government has also allowed an additional deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh for interest payment of housing loans.

A lot has been announced to promote private higher education under the “Study in India” initiative, and building world class institutions and also sports universities under Khelo Bharat.

The government has also announced opening up of the sovereign debt market. Those who doubt the government’s intention can draw comfort from the fact that this will help the government swap high-cost domestic debt for cheaper international credit, thereby helping to reduce interest rates.

The banking sector has seen many reforms in last five years. Further, to help private capital formation, the government has promised Rs 70,000 crore of fresh capital infusion into public sector banks. It will also set up development financial institutions to support long-gestation projects and tackle the asset-liability mismatch. To boost consumption and resolve the NBFC issues, the government has guaranteed 10 per cent of loss on assets pool purchases to the tune of Rs 1,00,000 crore from NBFCs.

At present, the private sector is largely over-leveraged, and is under pressure to resolve its debts and is short of capital. For capital formation, the government has to depend on foreign capital and, therefore, is continuing with its policy of liberalizing FDI, particularly into insurance, aviation and single brand retail segment.

MSMEs have also has received special allocation by the government; to support manufacturing, the government has announced streamlining 55 labour laws into four codes and enhancing minimum wages. Small traders with turnover up to Rs 1.5 crore will get the benefit of a pension scheme.

The government has reduced the corporate tax to 25 per cent for small enterprises with a turnover up to Rs 400 crore, and has announced several measures to boost the start-up ecosystem. To continue with the benefits of this provision, it is expected that it will not be misused by the beneficiaries as is done at times under capital gains tax, dividend distribution tax and buy-back of shares.

Modernization of railways is estimated to require about Rs 50 lakh crore of investment. The government has proposed public private partnerships and selective route privatisation to augment its resources. Initiatives like building a national power grid and a warehousing grid will have far-reaching benefits.

For ease of doing business, tax compliance is crucial. The government’s plan to implement e-assessment is a big game changer: It will bring transparency and reduce harassment of tax payers due to subjective human intervention.

The government’s initiative in resolving pending indirect tax litigation through Sabka Vishwas Legacy Dispute Resolution Scheme is commendable. This scheme covers, past disputes and provides relief ranging from 40 to 70 per cent, and also relief on levy of interest and penalties.

With all the constraints on expenditure, the finance minister has allocated funds across various social segments. The budget has increased funds allocated to central sponsored schemes by 8.8 per cent to Rs. 3, 31,610 crore. The total expenditure of the government has increased by 13.4 per cent from the revised estimates. The fiscal deficit has been kept under check at 3.3 per cent of GDP. The budget meets the demand for investment and growth without disturbing the fiscal math.

It is not redistribution but growth that matters. The prime minister has rightly said that we have to increase the size of the cake. Economic growth is our target and the focus on empowerment of the weaker sections of the society though education, healthcare etc. is the solution.

बजट – 2021 – नए भारत का आधार

यह बजट असाधारण परिस्थितियों में पेश किया गया है जब देश कोरोना संक्रमण के दौर से जूझ कर हर क्षेत्र में विकास के लिए आगे बढ़ने के लिए तैयार है। यह सभी वर्गों खास कर युवाओं, बुजुर्गों, महिलाओं, संगठित एवं असंगठित क्षेत्र के मजदूरों और छोटे बड़े उद्यमियों की आशाओं व आकांक्षाओं को पूरा करने वाला बजट है।

कौरोना की त्रासदी से हम सभी के ध्यान में आया कि स्वास्थ्य एवं आर्थिक विकास ऐसे दो क्षेत्र का देश के विकास में महत्वपूर्ण स्थान है। सरकार की पहली प्राथमिकता में जनजीवन के स्वास्थ पर ध्यान देना था जिसके फलस्वरुप आज हम कौरोना की मार से काफी हद तक निकलने की स्थिति में आ गए हैं। सरकार ने इसकी भी चिंता की है कि गरीब, ग्रामीण लोगों तक लाभ धनराशि के रूप में सीधे पहुंचे। आत्मनिर्भर भारत योजना ने इस कार्य को तीव्रता से आगे बढ़ाया। अगला कदम था जो कोरोना के कारण अर्थव्यवस्था को धक्का लगा उसे दुरुस्त करना। मोदी जी ने अर्थव्यवस्था को वापस पटरी पर लाने का काम किया और आज अगर हम देखें तो देश की अर्थव्यवस्था पूनः विकास पथ पर अग्रसर हो गई है। रिसर्व बैंक की रिपोर्ट हो या वित्त मंत्रालय की मासिक आर्थिक रिपोर्ट सभी देश की आर्थिक पहलुओं की मजबूत स्थिति दर्शाती है। परचेस मैनेजर इंडेक्स भी उद्योगों की बढ़त ही दर्शाता है। इंडस्ट्रियल प्रोडक्शन सूचकांक भी आठ क्षेत्र में विकास की अच्छी दर दर्शा रहा है। जीएसटी का कर संग्रह पिछले तीनों माह में एक लाख करोड से ऊपर रहा है। इन से इतर आईएमएफ रिपोर्ट के अनुसार भी भारत की सकल घरेलु अर्थव्यवस्था अगले वर्ष 11.5 प्रतिशत से बढ़ेगी और भारत विश्व की सबसे तीव्र गति से बढ़ने वाली अर्थव्यवस्था बना रहेगा।

इस बजट में इस मजबूत आर्थिक आधार को और समर्थन देने की आवश्यकता थी जिसको वित्त मंत्री जी ने बखूबी निभाया है।

यह छः स्तंभो को रेखांकित करने वाला नए दशक का बुनियादी दृष्टि -पत्र है। कोविड संक्रमण की विषम परिस्थिति में प्रधानमंत्री श्री नरेंद्र मोदी जी ने भारत की क्षमता को पहचानते हुए ‘आत्मनिर्भर भारत का संकल्प’ देश के सामने रखा। यह बजट आत्मनिर्भरता के उसी संकल्प को सिद्ध करने की कड़ी है।

ऐसे सर्वस्पर्शी, सर्व-समावेशी एवं देश के सर्वांगीण विकास के प्रति समर्पित बजट 2021-22 में में स्वास्थ और कल्याण, वित्तीय पूंजी, समावेशी विकास, मानव पूंजी का विकास, अनुसंधान एवं विकास और न्यूनतम सरकार और अधिकतर शासन पर विशेष ध्यान दिया गया है।

यह छः स्तंभो को रेखांकित करने वाला नए दशक का बुनियादी दृष्टि -पत्र है। कोविड संक्रमण की विषम परिस्थिति में प्रधानमंत्री श्री नरेंद्र मोदी जी ने भारत की क्षमता को पहचानते हुए ‘आत्मनिर्भर भारत का संकल्प’ देश के सामने रखा। यह बजट आत्मनिर्भरता के उसी संकल्प को सिद्ध करने की कड़ी है।

ऐसे सर्वस्पर्शी, सर्व-समावेशी एवं देश के सर्वांगीण विकास के प्रति समर्पित बजट 2021-22 में में स्वास्थ और कल्याण, वित्तीय पूंजी, समावेशी विकास, मानव पूंजी का विकास, अनुसंधान एवं विकास और न्यूनतम सरकार और अधिकतर शासन पर विशेष ध्यान दिया गया है।

इस बजट में ढ़ाचागत सुधारों पर विशेष जोर दिया गया है। पिछले बजट में कैपिटल एक्सपेंडिचर के लिए 4.21 लाख करोड़ रुपए दिए गए थे जबकि इस वर्ष 5.54 लाखों रुपए खर्च किए जाने का प्रावधान किया गया है जो कि पिछले बजट से 34 फ़ीसदी अधिक है। व्यापक रूप से अचल संपत्ति जैसे सड़क मार्ग, रेल, हवाई अड्डा, पुल आदि के निर्माण में खर्च धनराशि से व्यापार में सुविधा एवं दैनिक जीवन यापन में सहूलियत होती है। इस बढे हुए खर्च से अर्थव्यवस्था में मांग बढ़ेगी स्टील, सीमेंट, कंसट्रक्शन का सामान सभी क्षेत्र में तेजी आएगी और उद्योग एवं नौकरियों का सृजन भी होगा।

7 मेगा टैक्सटाइल पार्क बनाने की घोषणा की गई है जो देश में रोजगार सृजन में बहुत बड़ी भूमिका निभाएगा। स्वास्थ्य क्षेत्र में सुधार को भी आगे बढ़ाया गया है। स्वास्थ्य के क्षेत्र में सरकार ने अपने खर्च को 137 प्रतिशत बढ़ाया है। आज कोरोना की दो वैक्सीन भारत में बनी है। भारत वैक्सीन एवं दवाइयों के क्षेत्र में एक विश्व शक्ति बनकर आने वाले समय में उभरेगा। इसका इस बजट में पूरा ख्याल रखा गया है।  

शिक्षा एवं रिसर्च पर विशेष ध्यान दिया गया है। शिक्षा के क्षेत्र में मोदी सरकार ने कई कदम उठाए हैं। 100 से ज्यादा सैनिक स्कूलों और हायर एजुकेशन काउंसिल (HECI) का गठन तथा 15,000 स्कूलों को आदर्श स्कूल बनाए जाने का प्रस्ताव स्कूली शिक्षा को मजबूत करेगा। रिसर्च के लिए भी 50,000 करोड़ रुपए अलग से रखे गए हैं। आदिवासी इलाकों में 38,000 करोड़ रुपए की लागत से 750 एकलव्य स्कूल खोले जाने का प्रयास भी काफी उत्तम है। शिक्षा की दृष्टि से यह काफी सराहनीय कदम है।

किसानों की आय दोगुना हो, उसकी उपज का उन्हें सही मूल्य मिले, उन्हें अपनी फसल बेचने में कठिनाई न हो, किसानों की मेहनत आढ़तियों तथा बिचौलियों की भेंट न चढ़े, इसको लेकर सरकार लगातार सुधारवादी कदम उठा रही है। फसलों पर एमएसपी बढ़ाकर उसे उत्पादन लागत का डेढ़ गुना किया गया है। साथ ही मोदी सरकार ने कांग्रेस की यूपीए सरकार से करीब 3 गुना अधिक राशि देश के किसानों के खाते में अब तक पहुंचा दी है।

मोदी सरकार जन-जन तक स्वच्छ पीने का पानी पहुंचाने के लिए कटिबद्ध है। स्वच्छ जल के लिए देशभर में अगले 5 वर्षों में 2.87 लाख करो रुपए का प्रवधान किया गया है। शहरी इलाकों के लिए भी जल जीवन मिशन शुरू किया जाना एक अच्छा कदम है।

1938 से चले आ रहे इंश्योरेंस एक्ट में बदलाव किया गया है। इंश्योरेंस सेक्टर में एफडीआई की नीति में बदलाव लाया गया है। इसकी चर्चा बहुत दिनों से चली आ रही थी, लेकिन यह परिवर्तन माननीय प्रधानमंत्री श्री नरेंद्र मोदी जी ने किया है। वीनिवेश की नीति पर स्पष्ट पॉलिसी लाकर सरकार धनार्जन प्राप्ति का मार्ग प्रशस्त कर रही है। सार्वजनिक क्षेत्र के उपक्रमों के निजिकरण के द्वारा सरकार का प्रयास है कि जिन क्षेत्रों में सरकार का कोई विशेष औचित्य नहीं है उन्हें विनिवेश करना उचित होगा। सरकार ने राजकोषिय घाटे को बढ़ाकर और ऋण आपूर्ति के द्वारा संसाधनों को जुटाने का मार्ग चुना है जिसे सभी के द्वारा सराहा गया है। जबकी सभी तरफ से यही सुझाव आ रहे थे की डायरेक्ट टैक्स बढाया जा सकता है लेकिन अनेक चुनौतियों के बावजूद मोदी सरकार ने जनता पर किसी प्रकार का कोई अतिरिक्त भार नहीं डाला है। समय की मांग थी कि सरकार अपने व्यय को बढ़ाए और अर्थव्यवस्था को मजबूती प्रदान करें ।

सरकार ने हर तरह से अर्थव्यवस्था को गति प्रदान करने का मार्ग प्रशस्त किया है। सभी लोगों ने मुक्त हृदय से स्वागत किया है।  

गोपाल कृष्ण अग्रवाल

राष्ट्रीय प्रवक्ताभाजपा आर्थिक मामलों

Reform 2.0 Labour Codes

After Atma Nirbhar Bharat stimulus package our government has embarked on two major reforms in agriculture and labour laws. These policy reforms are market orientated, bringing efficiency, transparency and easy of compliances in both the segments.

India had 67 percent of population in the working age (15-64 years) in 2019 according to the World Bank. This high ratio of working to non-working age population, gives us an opportunity to reap the demographic dividend, if we are able to gainfully employ this population. The window is small and closing fast because of falling fertility rates in India. If we as a country miss this opportunity, we will be old before we get rich. With this and the fact that employment is poverty alleviating in mind, Modi government is in overdrive to set an enabling environment.

Indian labour laws are considered complex and restrictive. One of its defining characteristics is job security of workers covered under it. Complexity also implies huge compliance burden for the companies. As a consequence of this, the labour to capital ratio is low despite the fact that India is a labour abundant and capital scarce country. Rigidities in the labour market have also ensured that the employment elasticity of Indian economy has remained low. Therefore GDP growth does not lead to commensurate employment generation.

A disturbing feature of Indian labour sector is its very high degree of informality. 93 percent of India’s labour force works informally. About 80 percent of it works in the unorganized sector and the remaining is employed informally in the organized sector of the economy. Therefore a lot of focus in these codes has been to promote formal employment. The definition of ‘employees’ in the code on social security has been expanded to include workers employed through contractors, self employed migrant workers, additional categories of platform workers etc. It also provides for a registration of unorganized workers, gig workers and platform workers and says that the Central government will set up a social security fund for such workers. These provisions together with measures like making appointment letters compulsory and allowing business enterprises to hire workers directly on contract are aimed at reducing informality.

One of the most significant changes brought through the new industrial relations code is the introduction of fixed term contracts. The first time fixed term contracts were introduced was in 2016 but it was only for the apparel industry. Though in 2018 it was allowed for other industries as well, the effect was limited because this new form of employment was introduced through changes in rules made under the Standing Orders Act which applies only to industrial establishments with 100 or more workers. In the absence of such an enabling provision, companies were forced to hire workers informally. Thus, this change is expected to boost employment in industries that experience seasonality in production. Workers will be eligible for all statutory benefits available to a permanent worker proportionately, according to the period of service rendered by them and the minimum qualifying period would not apply to them.

Focus of the current codes on self certification, reduced compliance and simplification will lead to a lower cost of doing business. Closure, lay-offs and retrenchment in factories employing up to 300 workers would now not need prior approval of the concerned Government. This, coupled with the fact that even the Standing Orders has been made applicable to establishments with over 300 workers means that smaller companies would not be hobbled by regulatory cholesterol. Not only this, the code on occupational safety, health and working conditions has increased the threshold of its applicability to 20 workers  where the manufacturing process is carried out using power and 40 workers without using power. Government rightly believes that when enterprises grow up to a certain size only then they would be in a position to bear higher compliance burden. The biggest beneficiary of the new codes would be the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Sector. This sector produces 40 percent of India’s GDP and employs a higher number of people per unit of invested capital.

With other supportive measures like production linked incentives, globally competitive corporate tax rate and balanced free trade agreements, we can safely say that the Central government has almost solved the jigsaw puzzle that Indian manufacturing sector had become and with the coming Budget 2021 and the years that follow, would see exponential growth in manufacturing and employment.

Economic reforms require expending political capital by the governments, as the benefits of reforms are spread thin and apparent only with a time lag and seemingly adverse impact on certain stakeholder are felt immediately. Therefore, India has not seen many major reforms since 1991 and even then important areas like land, labour and agriculture were left out of agenda. The biggest take away from these codes and the recent reforms in the agricultural sector, is a confirmation that a reformist government is at the helm of affairs that will get Indian economy rid of its socialist vestiges. That, for me, is a very reassuring feeling.

Gopal Krishna Agarwal

National Spokesperson Of BJP

Budget for India @75 is a template for Amrit Kaal

A focused, business-like approach to the budget at a time when there was pressure to come up with a populist one shows the maturity and sagacity of the Narendra Modi government. It leaves no doubt that the government is clear on long-term objectives and not too perturbed by short-term disruptions, and that it is committed to putting India on the trajectory of a high single-digit growth rate on a sustainable basis. 

The budget is high on policy stability, predictability and trust-based governance. This is evident from the fact that it has left all important provisions related to direct and indirect taxation unchanged. Government after government has tweaked the tax regime in successive budgets, but the finance minister (FM) has changed the narrative this time. The government has reaffirmed its commitment to keeping tax rates low and, at the same time, easing tax compliances by giving an opportunity to taxpayers to rectify their tax return, subject to a few conditions. 

The government has also decided to follow a sound litigation management policy and declared that if a question of law is pending before a jurisdictional high court or the Supreme Court, the tax department will not file any appeal in a matter involving the same question of law till the time it is settled. Stable and predictable policies play an important role in engendering private economic decisions and fostering economic growth. 

While there are many takeaways from the budget, the continued emphasis on public capital expenditure (capex) is one of the highlights. The FM reiterated that private capital expenditure is still weak, and the government will have to do the heavy lifting. Public capex has been increased by a whopping 35% to ₹7.5 lakh crore for 2022-23. Together with central government grants and aids to state governments for capital expenditure, this figure goes up to ₹10.68 lakh crore. As a result of this, private capex may take off sooner than expected. This will catalyse growth in many business ecosystems. The Economic Survey 2021-22 has already showed that there has been an uptick in bank credit growth. 

Micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), which are the backbone of the manufacturing sector, have been more severely impacted by Covid-19. Keeping this in mind, the government has extended the Emergency Credit Guarantee Line by one additional year to March 31, 2023, with additional ₹50,000 crore for hospitality and related sectors that were hit the hardest by the pandemic. Credit guarantee for micro and small enterprises (CGTMSE) has also been revamped. Thus, the ameliorative measures in the budget are extremely targeted, bringing efficiency in the use of taxpayers’ money. 

The government has also struck a fine balance between capital expenditure and fiscal consolidation. Fiscal deficit for FY 22-23 has been projected at 6.4% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the government remains committed to bring it below 4.5% of the GDP by 2025-26. The glide path is going to be smooth and gradual. The Goods and Services Tax (GST) collection of ₹1.41 lakh crore in January 2022, the highest since the inception of this transformative tax regime, assures us of the strength of economic recovery post-pandemic. Hence, there should not be any negative surprises on the revenue front in the coming financial year. We must bear in mind that the current average tax rate under GST is around 11.6%, which is much below the revenue-neutral rate of 15-15.5% calculated by an expert body at the time of its implementation. Therefore, there is enough room to further increase GST collection, should the government choose to. 

Nowhere is the budget as future oriented as when it talks about urbanisation. We all know that our top six cities are bursting at the seams and all additional expenditure being incurred by their governments is to mostly make them liveable for the existing population.  

The FM rightly said that our tier-2 and tier-3 cities will have to step up to shoulder the responsibility of ongoing urbanisation. Cities and towns can be our future engines of growth only when they are properly planned, inclusive and operate on sustainable principles, not when they present a picture of squalor and apathy.  

The emphasis on new building by-laws, revamped town planning and creating centres of excellence in these areas in leading academic institutions through the grant of ₹250 crore to five such institutions show the commitment of the Modi government in this area. 

It is evident from the budget speech that the PM Gati Shakti is going to be the linchpin around which the government will build a world-class, seamless, multi-modal transport and logistics infrastructure, based on clean energy. One of the reasons why our manufacturers are not globally competitive has to do with high logistics costs and broken domestic supply chains.  

The share of logistics costs right now is around 14% of GDP and the government is committed to bring it down to 8-9%. Gati Shakti, with its focus on seven engines (sectors), will bring down logistics costs, reduce tedious documentation and enable lean inventory management. 

In her speech, the FM said that this budget will set the template for the next 25 years, from India@ 75 to India@100, the 25 years of Amrit Kaal. If India commits itself to follow this template of high public capital expenditure, control on populist measures, stable and predictable tax regime and government policies, and a single-minded focus on reforms, this budget will be remembered as the trailblazer. 

E-Shram Portal: an effort for the welfare of marginalized workers


E-Shram portal is a data base for unorganized sector workers developed by Ministry of labour and employment (MOLE) which is linked with Aadhar. Unorganized workers receive an e-Shram card/id on digital form after registration at the portal. They also can update their profiles through portal or mobile app. This app will help in creating awareness about various welfare programmes and entitlements for the workers in the unorganized sector.

Although registration was recommended by the National Commission for Enterprises in the Unorganized Sector (NCEUS) and made mandatory by Unorganized Workers’ Social Welfare Act 12 years ago, thanks to Narendra Modi Govt’s recent initiatives that the e-Shram portal has been actively to target in the unorganized sector workers. In May 2021 the Supreme Court also issued a ruling for introducing a temporary, comprehensive and universal registration system for informal workers and rotating migrants. In fact, both informal worker and rotating migrants are alternatively known as unorganized sector workers.

As per Periodic Labour Force Survey PLFS (2018-19), nearly 88 per cent of workers are engaged in the unorganized sector while it contributes nearly 52 per cent to our GDP. On the contrary, the organized sector contributes nearly 48 per cent to the GDP while it employs hardly 12 per cent of the entire workforce. This indicates the glaring in equality in the distribution of income. So far it has been impossible to provide any timely relief, forget about providing social security because it is difficult to exactly identify the large number of invisible unorganized sector workers. The NSSO survey which are conducted at different points of time, do not adequately capture their extent and magnitude. E-Sharm Portal is a right step in this direction.

The Benefits for the Registered Workers

The Universal Account Number on e-Shram card will be acceptable all over the country for obtaining social security benefits such as insurance coverage, maternity benefits, pensions, educational benefits, provident fund benefits, housing schemes etc. For the social security benefits the workers need to add the details of their identification like, name, occupation, address, education qualifications, skill, etc. on the portal. Also, through e-Shram card, the migrant workers can take admission for their children in the nearby school, which is one of the major problems, they are facing now. The e-Shram id will be used as their identity card. Further, the beneficiaries will get benefit Rs 2 lakh on death or permanent disability and Rs. 1 lakh for partial disability under the Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY).

The Progress

The e-Shram portal has been made available to states/UTs to register all eligible workers in the unorganized sector including construction workers, migrant workers, gig and platform workers, street vendors, domestic workers, agriculture workers, milkmen, fishermen, truck drivers etc. The eligible workers can register through, over four lakh Common Service Centres (CSCs), which act as access points for delivery of digital services. As on 30th December 2021, the portal has registered around 162 million workers, 67% which are from five states: Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, Odisha and Jharkhand. These are the major states as far as the number of registrations on E-Shram portal is concerned (see Fig-1).

Figure 1: Share of Major States (in %) in total registration on E-Shram Portall

As shown in Figure-1, these five states account for around seventy per cent of total registration. From which Uttar Pradesh has the highest enrollment, followed by west Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand.

The portal also collects data of unorganized workers with regards to their occupations. As we know, occupational structure in Indian economy depends upon three different sectors viz., agriculture (primary) industry (secondary) and services (tertiary). In E- shram portal shows that 62 percent of people have enrolled in the primary sector which is higher than the other sectors. Agriculture and construction sectors engage the maximum number of workers in the unorganized sector. The relative distribution of various occupations among the registered workers is shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2: Percentage Distribution of registered workers by major occupations

Apart from agriculture and construction, many more have registered in this portal from different occupations like, domestic and household workers, apparel sector workers, automobile and transport sector workers, electronics and hardware workers, capital goods workers, education, healthcare, retail, tourism and hospitality, food industry. Besides occupation, the portal also collects data on the gender of the workers. Given the number of registration so far, the distribution by gender is presented in figure 3.

Figure 3: Registration of workers by gender (in %)

As shown in figure 3, gender-wise analysis of e-Shram portal registrations shows that more females have registered than the males. For the females it is around 52 per cent while the rest 48 per cent comprise of male workers. Certainly, higher registration of female workers is surprising given their lower participation in labour force. Further the e-Shram portal data suggested that around 94 per cent of workers registered earn an income of Rs. 10,000 or below, per month. Also, the collected data reveals that a large number of workers are young i.e. around 61 per cent of registered workers belong to 18-40 age group. Moreover, the portal also records the migration status. However, the information getting collected is highly inadequate to draw any concrete inference about the status of migrant workers.


The portal is part of digitization process that has assumed a crucial part in prospering the Indian economy. The “make in India” drive has given a gigantic push to digitalization of India, with the help of digital technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), remote sensing, big data, block chain and IoT. Thus, the e-Shram portal: the exceptional drive is a much-needed development as it will bring unorganised laborer’s data under one umbrella which will help the Govt. to address their concerns.