Finance Minister Jaitley presents Budget 2017-18

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced Rs 10 lakh crore for agriculture credit for the current fiscal year. Special efforts will be made to ensure adequate credit to "under served" regions like eastern states and Jammu and Kashmir, Jaitley said, presenting the Union Budget 2017-18 in the Lok Sabha.

Noting that about 40 per cent of the small farmers procure loans from cooperative structure, Jaitley said the government will support National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard) for the computerisation and integration of its 63,000 "functional PSEs" with core banking support and financial cooperatives.

This integration will be done over three years at an estimated cost of Rs 9,800 crore with financial participation from the states.

"This will ensure seamless flow of credit to small and marginal farmers," he added.

Jaitley also termed the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) as an important step in safeguarding farmers' crops against natural calamities, and announced a coverage of 40 per cent for the current fiscal year, increased from 30 per cent in 2016-17.

The budget for the PMFBY has increased from Rs 5,500 crore last year to Rs 13,220 crore this year.

To help farmers know the quality of soil, Jaitley announced setting up of 'mini-labs' at Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) and ensure 100 per cent coverage in all 648 KVKs across the country.

"Issuance of soil health cards has gathered momentum... Its real benefits would be available only when the soil samples are tested for quality," he said.

The Finance Minister also provisioned for 100 such mini-labs developed by local qualified entrepreneurs who will be subsidised by the government.

A 100 per cent increase in the irrigation fund was also announced at Rs 40,000 crore, from earlier Rs 20,000 crore.

Jaitley promised a dedicated micro-irrigation fund to achieve the goal of 'Per Drop More Crop' with an initial corpus of Rs 5,000 crore..

Highlights of Union Budget 2017-18

  • Five special tourism zones, anchored on SPVs, to be set up; Incredible India II campaign to be launched across the world
  • Expert international assistance will be harnessed to improve railway safety preparedness and maintenance practices
  • Allocation for infrastructure at record Rs 3,96,135 crore in 2017-18
  • National Testing Agency to be established to conduct all entrance exams for higher education
  • Innovation Fund for secondary education to be created
  • Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras to be extended to more than 600 districts across the country
  • Mahila Shakti Kendras to be set up at village level, in 14 lakh ICDS centres, with an allocation of Rs. 500 crore
  • Net tax revenue grew by 17 per cent in 2015-16
  • Committed to making taxation rate reasonable, our tax administration more fair and expand the tax base of the country
  • Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana lending target has been doubled at Rs 2.44 lakh crore for 2017-18
  • 3,500 km railway lines to be commissioned in 2017-18 against 2,800 km in 2016-17
  • Railways plan size for 2017-18 pegged at Rs. 1,31,000 crore, including Rs 55,000 crore to be provided by the government
  • Using space technology in a big way to plan MGNREGA works
  • During 2017-18, another 5 lakh ponds to be constructed for drought-proofing
  • AadharPay, a merchant version of Aadhaar-enabled payment system to be launched shortly for those without debit cards, mobile phones
  • Sanitation coverage in rural areas has gone up to 60 per cent
  • Swachh Bharat Mission has made tremendous progress in promoting safe sanitation and ending open defectation
  • By 2019 all passenger coaches of railways to be fitted with bio-toilets
  • 1 crore houses to be completed by 2019 for houseless and those living in 'kacha' houses
  • Rs 19,000 crore in 2017-18 for PMGSY; together with contribution from states, Rs 27,000 crore to be spent
  • Total allocation for rural, agricultural & allied sectors for 2017-18 is a record Rs 1,87,223 crore, up 24 per cent from last year
  • Target for agricultural credit in 2017-18 has been fixed at a record Rs 10 lakh crore
  • Coverage of Fasal Bima Yojana to go up from 30 per cent of cropped area, to 40 per cent in 2017-18, 50 per cent in 2018-19
  • NABARD to set up dedicated micro-irrigation fund to be set to achieve Per Drop More Crop mission
  • Corpus of NABARD's long-term irrigation fund raised to Rs 40,000 crore
  • Mini soil-testing labs in Krishi Vigyan Kendras to ensure 100 per cent coverage
  • Highest ever allocation to MGNREGA at Rs 48,000 crore
  • Merger of Railway Budget with Budget 2017 a historic step
  • Transform, Energize and Clean India - #TECIndia - our agenda for the next year
  • Advancement of budget will enable all ministries, departments to operationalize all schemes right from beginning of next fiscal
  • Demonetisation aims to create a new normal, where the GDP would be bigger, cleaner and real
  • Effects of demonetisation not expected to spill over to next year
  • Firmly believe that GST, Demonetisation, built on JAM, will have an epoch-making impact on the lives of our people
  • Demonetisation aims to create a new normal, where the GDP would be bigger, cleaner and real
  • Recalls #MahatmaGandhi's words: A right cause never fails
  • 3 challenges in current global scenario:Monetary stance of US FED Reserve, Commodity prices specially crude oil & retreat from globalisation
  • We have moved from a discretionary administration to a policy-based administration
  • Expectations included burning issues like inflation and price rise, issue of corruption & crony capitalism
  • Our government was elected amidst huge expectations of people, the underlying theme of expectations being good governance
  • Hope to resolve all issues regarding GST via consultations
  • We are moving from informal to formal economy & the Government is now seen as a trusted custodian of public money
 

Budget News

VFX has altered storytelling, says Oscar winner

    Updated On : Mar 26,2017   3:28 pm
New Delhi, March 26 (IANS) The emergence and advancement of technology and visual effects (VFX) has transformed storytelling techniques, says Academy Award-winning VFX supervisor Scott E. Anderson, who has worked on films like "Hollow Man", "Point Break" and "The Shallows". View More..

Contribute to New India, Modi tells people (Roundup)

    Updated On : Mar 26,2017   2:42 pm
New Delhi, March 26 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said India was marching from "Swaraj to Su-raj" and urged the 125 crore people to contribute towards creating a "New India". View More..

New India is joint call of 125 crore Indians: Modi

    Updated On : Mar 26,2017   12:08 pm
New Delhi, March 26 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said the 'New India' was a joint call and desire of 125 crore Indians and called upon the people to perform their duties as responsible citizens. View More..

Odisha house committee to meet Modi seeking paddy MSP hike

    Updated On : Mar 25,2017   8:20 pm
Bhubaneswar, March 25 (IANS) A house committee, led by the assembly Speaker, will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi to demand increase of Minimum Support Price (MSP) of paddy, Agriculture Minister Pradeep Maharathy said on Saturday. View More..

66% want independent commission for Trump-Russia probe

    Updated On : Mar 25,2017   3:22 pm
Washington, March 25 (IANS) The majority of Americans do not support President Donald Trumps proposed spending cuts, and they think that an independent commission should probe possible links with Russia, a latest poll said. View More..

'Phillauri' mints Rs 4.02 crore on opening day

    Updated On : Mar 25,2017   1:28 pm
Mumbai, March 25 (IANS) "Phillauri", a romantic comedy film featuring Anushka Sharma, Diljit Dosanjh and Suraj Sharma, minted Rs 4.02 crore on its opening day. View More..

US lawmakers cancel vote on Trump healthcare plan

    Updated On : Mar 25,2017   4:48 am
Washington, March 25 (IANS) The Republican leadership of the US House of Representatives cancelled Friday's scheduled vote on President Donald Trump's bill to replace the healthcare reform carried out by predecessor Barack Obama. View More..

Meghalaya Assembly passes Rs 13,048 cr Budget

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   9:22 pm
Shillong, March 24 (IANS) The Meghalaya Assembly on Friday passed the annual state Budget of over Rs 13,048 crore for the year 2017-2018 by a voice vote. View More..

There is no alternative to UN, says Shashi Tharoor

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   7:20 pm
New Delhi, March 24 (IANS) Former Union Minister and Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Friday said in the current global set-up, there is no alternative to the United Nations (UN). View More..

People who wanted me to slash rates, now offer double price: Taapsee

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   7:20 pm
New Delhi, March 24 (IANS) When doing the quintessential heroine roles didn't work in her favour, Taapsee Pannu decided to turn the tables with heroic characters in content-driven films. View More..

Goa Budget: Beer, petrol to become costlier

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   5:30 pm
Panaji, March 24 (IANS) Beer and petrol will soon cost more in Goa, even as Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar in his Budget presented on Friday, promised to make the state garbage-free by 2020, while creating 4,000 jobs annually in the IT sector and linking Aadhar card to all social welfare schemes. View More..

BJP march to Telangana assembly against Muslim quota foiled

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   5:18 pm
Hyderabad, March 24 (IANS) Police arrested BJP leaders to foil their march to Telangana assembly on Friday to protest the state government's move for hiking the quota for Muslims in jobs and education. View More..

Trump demands vote on healthcare plan

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   5:14 pm
Washington, March 24 (IANS) US President Donald Trump issued an ultimatum to House Republicans to fall in line behind a broad health insurance overhaul or see their opportunity to repeal Obamacare vanish, demanding a Friday vote on a bill that appeared to lack a majority to pass. View More..

In 8 years in Parliament, Yogi Adityanath's most recurring debate topic: Hindu affairs

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   3:06 pm
"It is unfortunate that some opponents, communalists are trying to portray him as a rabble-rouser and fringe personality. They should go through his parliamentary debates. Those reveal his seasoned thinking on various issues of governance," union Urban Development Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu said on his Facebook page on March 19, 2017, referring to Uttar Pradesh (UP) Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. View More..

Goa will be India's first beggar-free state: Parrikar

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   2:20 pm
Panaji, March 24 (IANS) Goa will strive to become India's first beggar-free state, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said in his budget speech on Friday. View More..

Simeone still raw over Champions League defeat

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   12:36 pm
Madrid, March 24 (IANS) Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone revealed the hurt he felt and how he almost left the Spanish football club in the wake of last season's defeat to Real Madrid on penalties in last season's Champions League final. View More..

BJP lawmakers suspended from Telangana assembly

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   12:34 pm
Hyderabad, March 24 (IANS) All five BJP members in the Telangana legislative assembly were on Friday suspended from the house for two days for disrupting the proceedings. View More..

Oppo F3 Plus smartphone: Brave front camera (Tech Review)

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   12:28 pm
New Delhi, March 24 (IANS) China-based Oppo has done well in India, capturing 8.6 per cent market share in 2016, and the company has progressively shifted its strategy towards the premium end of devices. View More..

Trump demands vote on healthcare plan on Friday

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   8:10 am
Washington, March 24 (IANS) US President Donald Trump has demanded that House Republicans vote on Friday on a bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, a media report said. View More..

Trump demands vote on healthcare plan on Friday

    Updated On : Mar 24,2017   6:42 am
Washington, March 24 (IANS) US President Donald Trump on Thursday demanded that House Republicans vote on the bill to overturn and replace Obamacare before the weekend. View More..