Budget 2018-19

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presented his Budget for the year 2018-19 in Parliament. The budget is largely focused on uplift of agricultural sector, along with major push to healthcare and education sectors in the country.

Government said that a series of key reforms will surely propel India economy among the fastest growing economies of the world. Country firmly on course to achieve over 8% growth as manufacturing, services and exports back on good growth path.

Some of the key features of the Budget are :

  • No change in personal income tax slabs and rates;
  • Surcharge of 10% on income above Rs 50 lakh but less than Rs 1 cr, 15% on income above Rs 1 cr to continue;
  • Standard Deduction returns after a decade; Rs 40,000 to be allowed in lieu of transport allowance and medical expenses;
  • Economic growth pegged at 7.2-7.5% for H2 FY18;
  • India's average growth in first 3-year of NDA govt 7.5%;
  • Indian economy size $2.5 trillion; 7th largest in world;
  • India is expected to be 5th largest economy very soon;
  • Revised Fiscal Deficit estimate for 2017-18 is Rs 5.95 lakh crore at 3.5% of GDP;
  • Fiscal Deficit for FY'19 estimated at 3.3% of GDP;
  • Govt's market borrowing estimated at Rs 4.07 lakh cr in FY'19 versus Rs 4.79 lakh cr estimated in 2017-18;
  • MSP of all kharif crops to be hiked to at least 1.5 times of their production cost;
  • Institutional mechanism proposed to develop policies and practices for price and demand forecast;
  • Rs 2,000 cr fund for developing and upgrading agri marketing infra in 22,000 Grameen Agri Markets and 585 APMCs;
  • Allocation for food processing ministry doubled from Rs 715 cr in RE FY'18 to Rs 1,400 cr in BE FY'19;
  • Kisan Credit Cards extended to fisheries and animal husbandry farmers;
  • Agriculture credit disbursal target increased to Rs 11 lakh crore from Rs 10 lakh crore in 2017-18;
  • Steps announced to deal with air pollution in the Delhi-NCR region;
  • 2 crore more toilets to be built under Swachh Bharat Mission;
  • Substantial increase in allocation of National Rural Livelihood Mission to Rs 5,750 cr in FY'19;
  • Govt announced 2 major initiatives under 'Ayushman Bharat' programme;
  • Govt to launch a flagship National Health Protection Scheme to cover over 10 cr poor families providing coverage up to Rs 5 lakh per family every year for hospitalisation;
  • Govt earmarks Rs 56,619 cr for SCs and Rs 39,135 cr for STs in FY'19;
  • Sets target of Rs 3 lakh crore for lending under MUDRA;
  • Govt to contribute 12% of wages of the new employees in EPF for all sectors for 3 years;
  • Facility of fixed-term employment will be extended to all sectors;
  • Outlay of Rs 7,148 cr for textiles sector in 2018-19;
  • FinMin to leverage India Infrastructure Finance Corporation to help finance major infrastructure projects;
  • Redevelopment of 600 major railway stations being taken up;
  • Suburban network of 160 kms in Mumbai at an estimated cost of Rs 17,000 cr being planned;
  • Gross budgetary support for Railways hiked to over Rs 3 lakh crore in 2018-19 from Rs 2.73 lakh crore in 2017-18;
  • Plans to expand airport capacity more than 5 times to handle a billion trips a year;
  • Sebi to consider mandating, beginning with large firms, to meet about 1/4th of their financing needs from bond market;
  • Allocation on Digital India scheme doubled to Rs 3,073 cr;
  • Rs 10,000 cr for creation and augmentation of telecom infra;
  • Government to come out with policy to introduce toll system on 'pay as you use' basis;
  • Proposed expenditure on infra pegged at Rs 5.97 lakh cr as against Rs 4.94 lakh crore in FY'18;
  • Govt to evolve a scheme to assign enterprise a unique ID;
  • Capital of the FCI will be restructured to enhance equity and to raise long-term debt;
  • DIPAM will come up with more ETF offers including debt ETF;
  • Divestment target for FY'19 at Rs 80,000 cr;
  • Bank recapitalisation to pave way for PSBs to lend additional credit of Rs 5 lakh crore;
  • Govt to formulate a 'Gold Policy' to develop gold as an asset class;
  • Emoluments of President revised to Rs 5 lakh/month, Rs 4 lakh for vice president and Rs 3.5 lakh for Governors;
  • Govt proposes changes to refix salary, constituency allowance, office expenses and allowance payable to Members of Parliament;
  • The law will also provide for automatic revision of emoluments of MPs every five years indexed to inflation;
  • Rs 150 cr earmarked for FY'19 for the activities leading to Commemoration of 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi;
  • Growth in direct taxes up to Jan 15, 2018 is 18.7%;
  • Corporate tax reduced to 25% for firms with turnover of Rs 250 cr in 2016-17;
  • Interest income exemption on deposits with banks and post offices for senior citizens increased from Rs 10,000 to Rs 50,000;
  • Senior citizens will be able to claim benefit of deduction up to Rs 50,000 annually on health insurance premium and/or general medical expenditure incurred;
  • Govt introduces long-term capital gains on equity market; long-term capital gains over Rs 100,000 to be taxed at 10%;
  • Education cess increased to 4% from 3%;
  • E-assessment of Income Tax Act to eliminate person-to-person contact;
  • Customs duty on mobile phones increased from 15% to 20%; also on certain parts of TVs to 15%;
  • Govt makes PAN mandatory for any entity entering into a financial transaction of Rs 2.5 lakh or more;
  • Food subsidy to rise to Rs 1.69 lakh crore in 2018-19 from Rs 1.4 lakh crore in current year;
  • Defence outlay raised to Rs 2.82 lakh crore in 2018-19 from Rs 2.67 lakh crore in current year;
  • Customs duty on crude edible vegetable oils hiked from 12.5% to 30%; on refined edible vegetable oil from 20% to 35%;
  • Customs duty on perfumes, dental hygiene, after-shave, deodorants, room deodorisers, preparations for use on hair doubled to 20%.

Budget News

OPPO unveils budget A1K in India for Rs 8,490

    Updated On : Apr 30,2019   12:54 pm
New Delhi, April 30 (IANS) Chinese smartphone brand OPPO on Tuesday expanded its popular A series with a budget smartphone called A1K for Rs 8,490 in India. View More..

Ness Wadia sentenced for drug possession in Japan

    Updated On : Apr 30,2019   11:32 am
New Delhi, April 30 (IANS) Ness Wadia, son of industrialist Nusli Wadia and inheritor of one of Indias wealthiest business families, has been sentenced for drugs possession while on a skiing holiday to Japan. View More..

Price war in premium phone segment heats up in India

    Updated On : Apr 30,2019   10:40 am
New Delhi, April 30 (IANS) In a sign of intense competition in the premium smartphone segment in India, the price gaps among the top brands are narrowing ahead of the launch of OnePlus 7 series on May 14. View More..

India's military spending up by 3.1% and Pakistan's 11% in '18: SIPRI report

    Updated On : Apr 29,2019   6:48 pm
New Delhi, April 29 (IANS) World's military expenditure increased by 2.6 per cent, reaching $1822 billion in 2018 with India along with United States, China, Saudi Arabia and France contributing 60 per cent of the amount, according to a latest report from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). View More..

SpiceJet aircraft overshoots runway at Shirdi airport

    Updated On : Apr 29,2019   6:10 pm
Mumbai, April 29 (IANS) An aircraft of budget airline SpiceJet operating on the Delhi-Shirdi route, overshot the runway while landing at the Shirdi airport on Monday. View More..

Spain's Socialist Party wins 123 seats, falls short of majority

    Updated On : Apr 29,2019   5:34 am
Madrid, April 29 (IANS) Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez's Socialist Party emerged as the single largest political party after it won 123 seats in the Sunday's snap election, official results showed. View More..

Spain votes in crucial general elections

    Updated On : Apr 28,2019   1:46 pm
Madrid, April 28 (IANS) Voters in Spain on Sunday headed to the polls for the third time in four years, with the ruling Spanish Socialist Workers party (PSOE) expected to win the country's general elections but fall short of a majority. View More..

SpiceJet to connect Durgapur with Mumbai

    Updated On : Apr 26,2019   8:48 pm
Gurugram/Kolkata, April 26 (IANS) Airline major SpiceJet on Friday said it will commence two new daily flights connecting the underserved market of Durgapur with Mumbai from June 25. View More..

EIU set to lower India's growth outlook for 2019-20

    Updated On : Apr 26,2019   6:30 pm
New Delhi, April 26 (IANS) Indian economy will grow below its potential in 2019-20, said a report from the Hong Kong-based The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) while warning it is set to lower its own current estimate of 7.2 per cent for the country's GDP growth rate in its next forecast round. View More..

It's battle over guns n' apples in Himachal

    Updated On : Apr 26,2019   3:08 pm
Shimla, April 26 (IANS) Call it a battle of guns and apples in Himachal Pradesh. The fight between arch rivals Congress and BJP in the state's apple-growing belt of Shimla is over the use of anti-hail guns that are used to save the crop from hailstorms. View More..

'PM KISAN scheme to benefit just 38% farmers till polls conclude'

    Updated On : Apr 26,2019   12:04 pm
New Delhi, April 26 (IANS) The ambitious PM-KISAN scheme that aims to provide Rs 6,000 annually to small and marginal farmers will reach only 38 per cent of the intended beneficiaries by the end of ongoing Lok sabha polls, thanks to tardy furnishing of information by the states, lack of digitised land records and the election Model Code of Conduct being in force, according to government officials involved in its implementation. View More..

Gunmen kill mayor, 2 others in Mexico

    Updated On : Apr 26,2019   3:02 am
Veracruz (Mexico), April 26 (IANS) The mayor of Mixtla de Altamirano, her husband and her driver were murdered by gunmen in the Mexican Gulf state of Veracruz, officials said. View More..

Congress will solve farmers' loan woes, says Rahul

    Updated On : Apr 25,2019   7:02 pm
Ajmer, April 25 (IANS) Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Thursday said no farmer in the country will ever go to jail over non repayment of loan if his party is voted to power. View More..

'Tarpan': Sincere attempt mirroring society (IANS Review, Rating: **1/2)

    Updated On : Apr 25,2019   9:24 am
Film: "Tarpan"; Director: Neelam R. Singh; Cast: Nand Kishore Pant, Sanjay Kumar, Arun Shekhar, Rahul Chauhan, Poonam Alok Ingle, Nilam Kumari, Vandana Asthana, Padamja Rai, Lalit Jogi, Abhishek Madarecha; Rating: **1/2 View More..

Gulf NRIs offer funds for Jet to fly again

    Updated On : Apr 24,2019   11:10 pm
Bengaluru, April 24 (IANS) A group of Gulf-based NRIs are ready to raise emergency funding to enable debt-ridden and cash-strapped Jet Airways fly again, said a potential investor on Wednesday. View More..

GoAir to begin 28 additional flights from Friday

    Updated On : Apr 24,2019   10:58 pm
Mumbai, April 24 (IANS) Budget passenger carrier GoAir on Wednesday said it will operate 28 additional flights from Friday. View More..

Eco Survey may prescribe higher crop support prices

    Updated On : Apr 24,2019   9:12 pm
New Delhi, April 24 (IANS) The upcoming Economic Survey for 2019-20 may have some new prescriptions that can address travails of the large sections of farmers who roil under low income for their produce, big loans and lose foodgrains for lack of proper logistical facilities. View More..

Xiaomi launches 2 budget smartphones in India

    Updated On : Apr 24,2019   4:16 pm
New Delhi, April 24 (IANS) Chinese handset maker Xiaomi on Wednesday launched its Redmi Y3 and Redmi 7 smartphones in India. View More..

Indians deserve chance as national football coach: Pal

    Updated On : Apr 24,2019   3:34 pm
New Delhi, April 24 (IANS) If given an opportunity, an Indian can also do a good job as the head coach of the national football team feels Subrata Pal. One of the finest goalkeepers to have played for India, Pal believes that trusting the Indian coaches and handing them the responsibility can work wonders. View More..

SpiceJet to launch 28 new flights connecting Mumbai, Delhi

    Updated On : Apr 23,2019   8:06 pm
New Delhi, April 23 (IANS) Budget carrier SpiceJet will launch 28 new flights connecting Mumbai and Delhi with other cities on its domestic network from April 26. View More..