Yet another opportunity for reform lost.
Seems like India doomed to lose out another decade in terms of economic development. Nothing is going to happen the new government comes to office in 2014. Even then, one can not be sure that people will make the right choices, considering the outcome of recently concluded UP 2012 elections; Indian electorate continues to be stuck in the politics of caste, religion, regionalism, etc..
Good Governance ->Reforms -> Development -> Transformation of the country, the major issues which should be the forefront of any discussion in the media or among the Political figures of the country is no-where in sight. Nobody asks them these uncomfortable question. The quality of debate or discussion in the main-stream media (national level TV channels or news papers) is also only rhetorical at best. Leaders as well as medium sticking to their party lines and repeating same dialogues like parrots.
- Where is India as a country heading?
- What does the future has in store for India?
- When will we truly have the tryst with our destiny?
- Who is going to save the day for India?
- Does India really have it cross over from a developing country to a fully developed one?
This years budget leaves us with more questions than answers. Here is the 2012 budget summarized in key bullet points.
Overall Major points of the Budget 2012
- GDP expected to grow at 6.9% in 2011-12 & 7.6% in 2012-13
- Service Tax & Excise duty raised to 12% from 10%, Common tax code for service tax and excise
- Cuts customs duty on rail equipment to 7.5% from 10%
- Customs duty reduced from 7.5% to 2.5% for iron ore equipment
- Thermal power companies exempted from customs duty for 2 years
- Full exemption on customs duty on coal, LNG out of customs duty
- Fiscal deficit at 5.9% in FY 12
- Income TaxSlabs
- Up to 2 lakh rupees – NIL
- Rs 2– 5 lakh – 10%
- Rs 5–10 lakh – 20%
- Above Rs 10 lakh – 30%
- No change in corporate tax rates
- Direct Tax Code implementation deferred
- New law for micro finance institutions to be introduced
- Efforts on for consensus on 51% FDI in multi-brand retail
- FM announces new equity savings scheme
- To allow qualified foreign investors in Indian corporate debt markets
- Rs 10000 crore of tax fee bonds for power sector
- Rs 30,000 cr divestment target in FY 13
- To continue to hold 51% stake in state owned companies
- Allocated Rs 25,555 cr for Right to Education in FY13; cuts interest rates on loans to women self help groups
- To allocate Rs 14232 cr to UID project, up 13% in FY 13
- Change in IPO guidleines to promote small town participation
Highlights specific to Agriculture/Rural Sector
- Govt.to remove bottlenecks in agriculture, energy, transport, coal, power and national highways
- 12th plan infra investment at Rs 50 lakh crore
- Infrastructure sector to get Rs 50,00,000 lakh crore investment
- Some infra construction services exempt from service tax
- To make 8,800 km of highways in FY13; outlay raised
- Govt doubles allocation for tax-free bonds to Rs 60,000 crore for financing infrastructure projects in 2012/13
- Plan outlay for agriculture raised by 18% to Rs 20208 crore in FY 13
- Agriculture credit target raised to Rs 5.75 lakh crore, up Rs 1 lakh cr
- Rural development fund of 20000 crores
- Rs 14000 crore for rural drinking and sanitation in FY 13
- Irrigation, dams to be eligible for special funding
- New state owned irrigation company to be set up
- Rs 300 crore for intensified irrigation program
- Propose National mission for food processing
- 10,000 crores allocated to NABARD to fund RRBs
- To become self sufficient in urea production in next 5 years
- Rs 15890 crores for recapitalization of PSU banks
- To roll out computerized scheme for fertilizer subsidy transfer
- 5% customs duty exempted on equipment for fertilizer plants
- Govt. to fully provide for food subsidy in the budget
- Govt. plans bring down subsidy to 1.7 % of GDP in the next 3 years
- Interest subvention for short term crop loan continues
- NRHM allocation hiked to 20820 crores
Immediate Online reaction
Tinkerer Pranab has missed the bus – so what’s new?
Budget 2012: Reactions from the man on the street