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Friday, 5 July 2019

Budget 2019-2020 : Part A

Budget 2019-2020

Budget 2019-2020

Speech of

Nirmala Sitharaman
Minister of Finance

July 5, 2019

Mr. Speaker Sir,

            I rise to present the Budget for the year 2019-20.


2. The recent election which brought us to this august House today,
was charged with brimming hope and desire for a bright and stable New
India. Like never before, India celebrated its democracy by coming out to
vote in large numbers, like never before. Voter turnout was the highest at
67.9%. Every section – young, old, first time voters, voters since the first
General Election, women – all turned up to stamp their approval of a
performing Government. Through their unambiguous and firm mandate
they have reaffirmed “putting the nation first”. The people of India have
validated the two goals for our country’s future: that of national society
and economic growth.

3. The first term of Hon'ble PM Narendra Modi-led-NDA-Government
stood out as a performing Government, a Government whose signature
was in the last mile delivery. Between 2014-19, we provided a rejuvenated
Centre-State dynamic, cooperative federalism, GST Council, and a strident
commitment to fiscal discipline. We had set the ball rolling for a New
India, planned and assisted by the NITI Aayog, a broad based think tank.
We have showed by our deeds that the principle “Reform, Perform,
Transform” can succeed.

4. On many programmes and initiatives we had worked on
unprecedented scale. Average amount spent on food security per year
approximately doubled during 2014-19 compared to the preceding five
years. Number of patents issued more than trebled in 2017-18 as against
the number of patents issued in 2014. Our last mile delivery stood out and
the unknown citizen in every nook and corner of our country felt the
difference. Our objective was, and continues to be, 

5. Mega programmes and services which we initiated and delivered
during those 5 years will now be further accelerated. We shall further
simplify procedures, incentivize performance, reduce red-tape and make
the best use of technology just as we did earlier. I am confident we will
achieve our goals. Chankaya Niti Sutra too says: “Karya purusha karena
lakshyam sampadyate.” Meaning “with determined human efforts, the
task will surely be completed.” An Urdu couplet reads: 

Vision for the decade

6. Our economy was at approximately US$ 1.85 trillion when we
formed the Government in 2014. Within 5 years it has reached US$ 2.7
trillion. Hence, it is well within our capacity to reach the US$ 5 trillion in
the next few years. In the interim Budget of 2019-20 presented in
February 2019, we gave ourselves a Vision for the Decade. I flag here the
ten points of our Vision laid before us:

a. Building physical and social infrastructure;

b. Digital India reaching every sector of the economy;

c. Pollution free India with green Mother Earth and Blue Skies;

d. Make in India with particular emphasis on MSMEs, Start-ups,
defence manufacturing, automobiles, electronics, fabs and
batteries, and medical devices;

e. Water, water management, clean Rivers;

f. Blue Economy;

g. Space programmes, Gaganyan, Chandrayan and Satellite

h. Self-sufficiency and export of food-grains, pulses, oilseeds, fruits
and vegetables;

i. Healthy society – Ayushman Bharat, well-nourished women &
children. Safety of citizens;

j. Team India with Jan Bhagidari. Minimum Government Maximum

7. With this Vision set before us and with the mandate given by its
people, we are determined to take India to that height that it richly
deserves. I strongly believe that with the clear headed leadership of
Hon'ble Prime Minister we can achieve our goal.

5 Trillion Dollar Economy

8. The Indian economy will grow to become a 3 trillion dollar
economyin the current year. It is now the sixth largest in the world. Five
years ago, it was at the 11th position. In Purchasing Power Parity terms,
we are in fact, the 3rd largest economy already, only next to China and the

9. To attain this and more we need to continue undertaking many
structural reforms. In the last five years, we saw many big reforms in
particular, in indirect taxation, bankruptcy and real estate. While these
reforms were happening here in the Parliament, the common man’s life
was being changed through MUDRA loans to help him do his business, and
through several programmes it was being ensured that his/her kitchen
had become smokeless, his/her house got electricity connection and
women’s dignity was respected with the provision of toilets in homes. The
common man was served even as major transformational reforms were
being rolled out. And for this to continue we need to invest heavily in
infrastructure, in digital economy and on job creation in small and
medium firms.

10. Respected Speaker Sir, it took over 55 years for the Indian
economy to reach 1 trillion dollar but when the country and her people’s
hearts are filled with aasha, vishwas and aakansha that is, when hearts are
filled with hope, trust and aspirations, we, in 5 years, added 1 trillion
dollar. Today we are nearing a 3 trillion dollar level. So when we aspire to
reach a 5 trillion dollar level, many wonder if it is possible. If we can
appreciate our citizens’ "purusharth” or their “goals of human pursuit”
filled with their inherent desire to progress led by the dedicated
leadership present in this House, the target is eminently achievable.

11. All of India’s private sector industries – small, medium or large –
have played a substantial role in growing our economy. I recall the words
of an eminent industry leader, who said that his company’s growth has
always aligned itself with India’s growth, before and post-independence.
So if before-independence, India Inc. understood ‘Swadeshi’, today they
understand ‘Make in India’. We do not look down upon legitimate profitearning.
Gone are the days of policy paralysis and license-quota-control
regimes. India Inc. are India’s job-creators. They are the nation’s wealthcreators.

Together, with mutual trust, we can gain, catalyze fast and attain
sustained national growth. I wish to propose a number of initiatives as
part of a framework for kick-starting the virtuous cycle of domestic and
foreign investments.

12. Connectivity is the lifeblood of an economy. The Government has
given a massive push to all forms of physical connectivity through Pradhan
Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, industrial corridors, dedicated freight
corridors, Bhartamala and Sagarmala projects, Jal Marg Vikas and UDAN
Schemes. While the industrial corridors would improve infrastructure
availability for greater industrial investment in the catchment regions, the
dedicated freight corridors would mitigate the congestion of our railway
network benefitting the common man. The ambitious programme of
Bharatmala would help develop national road corridors and highways,
while Sagarmala would enhance port connectivity, modernization and
port-linked industrialization. If Sagarmala is aimed at improving the
infrastructure for external trade, equally it is the poor man’s transport
too. Waterways are proven as a cheap mode of transport. The Jal Marg
Vikas project for capacity augmentation of navigation on National
Waterways is aimed at smoothening internal trade carried through inland
water transport. These initiatives will improve logistics tremendously,
reducing the cost of transportation and increasing the competitiveness of
domestically produced goods.

13. The UDAN Scheme is providing air connectivity to smaller cities
and enabling the common citizens of our country to avail air travel. All
these programmes are also helping bridge the rural-urban divide.

14. As the world’s third largest domestic aviation market, the time is
ripe for India to enter into aircraft financing and leasing activities from
Indian shores. This is critical to the development of a self-reliant aviation
industry, creating aspirational jobs in aviation finance, besides leveraging
the business opportunities available in India’s financial Special Economic
Zones (SEZs), namely, International Financial Services Centre (IFSC).
Government will implement the essential elements of the regulatory
roadmap for making India a hub for such activities.

15. For providing an enabling ecosystem for growth in India of
Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) industry, it is proposed to
leverage India’s engineering advantage and potential to achieve selfreliance
in this vital aviation segment. Government will adopt suitable
policy interventions to create a congenial atmosphere for the
development of MRO in the country.

16. The New Metro Rail Projects for a total route length of 300
kilometers have been approved during 2018-19. Also, during 2019, about
210 kms metro lines have been operationalized. With this, 657 kms of
Metro Rail network has become operational across the country.

17. India’s first indigenously developed payment ecosystem for
transport, based on National Common Mobility Card (NCMC) standards,
was launched by Hon’ble Prime Minister in March, 2019. This will enable
people to pay multiple kinds of transport charges, including metro services
and toll tax, across the country. This inter-operable transport card runs on
RuPay card and would allow the holders to pay for their bus travel, toll
taxes, parking charges, retail shopping and even withdraw money.

18. Phase-II of FAME Scheme, following approval of the Cabinet with
an outlay of 10,000 crore for a period of 3 years, has commenced from
1st April, 2019. The main objective of the Scheme is to encourage faster
adoption of Electric vehicles by way of offering upfront incentive on
purchase of Electric vehicles and also by establishing the necessary
charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. Only advanced battery and
registered e-vehicles will be incentivized under the Scheme with greater
emphasis on providing affordable & environment friendly public
transportation options for the common man.

19. The Government will carry out a comprehensive restructuring of
National Highway Programme to ensure that the National Highway Grid of
desirable length and capacity is created using financeable model. After
completing the Phase 1 of Bharatmala, in the second Phase, States will be
helped to develop State road networks.

20. We need to develop our inland waterways to shift a significant
portion of inland cargo movement from road and rail. This Government
envisions using the rivers for cargo transportation, which will also help to
decongest roads and railways. As part of the Jal Marg Vikas Project for
enhancing the navigational capacity of Ganga, a multi modal terminal at
Varanasi has become functional in November 2018 and two more such
terminals at Sahibganj and Haldia and a navigational lock at Farakka would
be completed in 2019-20. The movement of cargo volume on Ganga is
estimated to increase by nearly four times in the next four years. This will
make movement of freight, passenger cheaper and reduce our import bill.

21. It is estimated that Railway Infrastructure would need an
investment of 50 lakh crores between 2018-2030. Given that the capital
expenditure outlays of Railways are around 1.5 to 1.6 lakh crores per
annum, completing even all sanctioned projects would take decades. It is
therefore proposed to use Public-Private Partnership to unleash faster
development and completion of tracks, rolling stock manufacturing and
delivery of passenger freight services.

22. To take connectivity infrastructure to the next level, we will build
on the successful model in ensuring power connectivity – One Nation, One
Grid – that has ensured power availability to states at affordable rates. I
propose to make available a blueprint this year for developing gas grids,
water grids, i-ways, and regional airports.

23. The recommendations of the High Level Empowered Committee
(HLEC) on retirement of old & inefficient plants, and addressing low
utilisation of Gas plant capacity due to paucity of Natural Gas, will also be
taken up for implementation now.

24. Our Government launched Ujjwal DISCOM Assurance Yojana
(UDAY) in 2015 aimed at financial and operational turnaround of
DISCOMs. Government is examining the performance of the Scheme and
it will be further improved. We will work with the State Governments to
remove barriers like cross subsidy surcharges, undesirable duties on open
access sales or captive generation for Industrial and other bulk power
consumers. Besides these structural reforms, considerable reforms are
needed in tariff policy. A package of power sector tariff and structural
reforms would soon be announced.

25. It is proposed that several reform measures would be taken up to
promote rental housing. Current Rental Laws are archaic as they do not
address the relationship between the Lessor and the Lessee realistically
and fairly. A Model Tenancy Law will also be finalized and circulated to the

26. Large public infrastructure can be built on land parcels held by
Central Ministries and Central Public Sector Enterprises all across the
country. Through innovative instruments such as joint development and
concession, public infrastructure and affordable housing will be taken up.

27. For ease of access to credit for MSMEs, Government has
introduced providing of loans upto 1 crore for MSMEs within 59 minutes
through a dedicated online portal. Under the Interest Subvention Scheme
for MSMEs, 350 crore has been allocated for FY 2019-20 for 2% interest
subvention for all GST registered MSMEs, on fresh or incremental loans.

28. Government payments to suppliers and contractors are a major
source of cash flow, especially to SMEs and MSMEs. Investment in
MSMEs will receive a big boost if these delays in payment are eliminated.
Government will create a payment platform for MSMEs to enable filing of
bills and payment thereof on the platform itself.

29. Encouraged by the overwhelming response, the Government of
India has decided to extend the pension benefit to about three crore retail
traders & small shopkeepers whose annual turnover is less than 1.5 crore
under a new Scheme namely Pradhan Mantri Karam Yogi Maandhan
Scheme. Enrolment into the Scheme will be kept simple requiring only
Aadhaar and a bank account and rest will be on self-declaration.

30. We recognize that investment-driven growth requires access to
low cost capital. It is estimated that India requires investments averaging
20 lakh crores every year (USD 300 billion a year). A number of
measures are proposed to enhance the sources of capital for
infrastructure financing:

 A Credit Guarantee Enhancement Corporation for which
regulations have been notified by the RBI, will be set up in 2019-

 An action plan to deepen the market for long term bonds including
for deepening markets for corporate bond repos, credit default
swaps etc., with specific focus on infrastructure sector, will be put
in place.

 It is proposed to permit investments made by FIIs/FPIs in debt
securities issued by Infrastructure Debt Fund – Non-Bank Finance
Companies (IDF-NBFCs) to be transferred/sold to any domestic
investor within the specified lock-in period.

31. Corporate Debt markets are crucial for the infrastructure sector.
Given the need to further deepen bond markets, a number of measures
are proposed to be taken up:-

 To deepen the Corporate tri-party repo market in Corporate Debt
securities, Government will work with regulators RBI/SEBI to
enable stock exchanges to allow AA rated bonds as collaterals.

 User-friendliness of trading platforms for corporate bonds will be
reviewed, including issues arising out of capping of International
Securities Identification Number (ISIN).

32. It is right time to consider increasing minimum public shareholding
in the listed companies. I have asked SEBI to consider raising the current
threshold of 25% to 35%.

33. As a key source of capital to the Indian economy, it is important to
ensure a harmonized and hassle free investment experience for Foreign
Portfolio Investors. Hence, it is proposed to rationalize and streamline the
existing Know Your Customer (KYC) norms for FPIs to make it more
investor friendly without compromising the integrity of cross-border
capital flows.

34. It is time to take our capital markets closer to the masses and meet
various social welfare objectives related to inclusive growth and financial
inclusion. I propose to initiate steps towards creating an electronic fund
raising platform – a social stock exchange - under the regulatory ambit of
Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for listing social enterprises
and voluntary organizations working for the realization of a social welfare
objective so that they can raise capital as equity, debt or as units like a
mutual fund.

35. It is important to get retail investors to invest in treasury bills and
securities issued by the Government. Efforts made by the Reserve Bank
will need to be supplemented with further institutional development using
stock exchanges. For this purpose, inter-operability of RBI depositories and
SEBI depositories would be necessary to bring about seamless transfer of
treasury bills and government securities between RBI and Depository
ledgers and for enabling this. The Government will take up necessary
measures in this regard in consultation with RBI and SEBI.

36. FDI inflows into India have remained robust despite global
headwinds. Global Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) flows slid by 13% in
2018, to US$ 1.3 trillion from US$ 1.5 trillion the previous year – the third
consecutive annual decline, according to UNCTAD’s World Investment
Report 2019. India’s FDI inflows in 2018-19 remained strong at US$
64.375 billion marking a 6% growth over the previous year. I propose to
further consolidate the gains in order to make India a more attractive FDI

a. The Government will examine suggestions of further opening up of
FDI in aviation, media (animation, AVGC) and insurance sectors in
consultation with all stakeholders.

b. 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) will be permitted for
insurance intermediaries.

c. Local sourcing norms will be eased for FDI in Single Brand Retail

37. It is high time India not only gets integrated into global value chain
of production of goods and services, but also become part of the global
financial system to mobilise global savings, mostly institutionalized in
pension, insurance and sovereign wealth funds. The Government is
contemplating organizing an annual Global Investors Meet in India, using
National Infrastructure Investment Fund (NIIF) as the anchor, to get all
three sets of global players-top industrialists/corporate honchos, top
pension/insurance/sovereignwealth funds and top digital
technology/venture funds.

38. An important determinant of attracting cross-border investments
is availability of investible stock to the Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs).
This issue assumes greater significance in view of the gradual shift, from
stock targeted investments, towards passive investment whereby funds
track global indices composition of which depends upon available floating
stock. Accordingly, I propose to increase the statutory limit for FPI
investment in a company from 24% to sectoral foreign investment limit
with option given to the concerned corporates to limit it to a lower
threshold. FPIs will be permitted to subscribe to listed debt securities
issued by ReITs and InvITs.

39. Even though India is the world's top remittance recipient, NRI
investment in Indian capital markets is comparatively less. With a view to
provide NRIs with seamless access to Indian equities, I propose to merge
the NRI-Portfolio Investment Scheme Route with the Foreign Portfolio
Investment Route.

40. New and innovative financial instruments have been launched in
the last five years like Infrastructure Investment Trusts (InvITs), Real
Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) as well as models like Toll-Operate-
Transfer (ToT) as part of the brownfield asset modernization strategy for
augmenting infrastructure investment. India has had a reasonable success
in brownfield asset monetization and several InvITs and one REIT
transaction have already been completed. Additionally, NHAI carried out
one ToT transaction as well. The cumulative resources garnered through
these instruments and model exceed 24,000 crore.

41. India has emerged as a major space power with the technology
and ability to launch satellites and other space products at globally low
cost. Time has come to harness this ability commercially. A Public Sector
Enterprise viz. New Space India Limited (NSIL) has been incorporated as a
new commercial arm of Department of Space to tap the benefits of the
Research & Development carried out by ISRO. The Company will
spearhead commercialization of various space products including
production of launch vehicles, transfer to technologies and marketing of
space products.

Grameen Bharat/Rural India

42. Mahatma Gandhi said, “The soul of India lives in its villages”. This
year even as we are marking the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma
Gandhi, I submit that our Government keeps Antyodaya at the core of all
its efforts. At the Centre of everything that we do, we keep “gaon, garib,
aur kisan”.

43. Hon'ble Prime Minister's two mega initiatives of Ujjwala Yojana
and Saubhagya Yojana - have transformed the lives of every rural family,
dramatically improving ease of their living. Household access to clean
cooking gas has seen an unprecedented expansion, through provision of
more than 7 crore LPG connections. All villages, and almost 100%
households across the country have been provided with electricity. A
combination of efficient implementation and enthusiastic adoption has
significantly improved access to energy for rural households. By 2022, the
75th year of India’s independence, I would like to assure the nation that
every single rural family, except those who are unwilling to take the
connection will have an electricity and a clean cooking facility.

44. Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Gramin (PMAY-G) aims to achieve
the objective of “Housing for All” by 2022. A total of 1.54 crore rural
homes have been completed in the last five years. In the second phase of
PMAY-G, during 2019-20 to 2021-22, 1.95 crore houses are proposed to
be provided to the eligible beneficiaries. These houses are also being
provided with amenities like toilets, electricity and LPG connections. With
the use of technology, the DBT platform and technology inputs, average
number of days for completion of houses has reduced from 314 days in
2015-16 to 114 days in 2017-18.

45. Fishing and fishermen communities are closely aligned with
farming and are crucial to rural India. Through a focused Scheme – the
Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY) – the Department of
Fisheries will establish a robust fisheries management framework. This will
address critical gaps in the value chain, including infrastructure,
modernization, traceability, production, productivity, post-harvest
management, and quality control.

46. Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) has brought many
socio economic gains in the rural areas. To accelerate the speed of
achieving universal connectivity of eligible habitations, the target of
connecting the eligible and feasible habitations was advanced from 2022
to 2019. I am happy to inform that all weather connectivity has now been
provided to over 97% of such habitations. This has been possible by
maintaining a high pace of road construction of 130 to 135 km per day in
the last 1,000 days. Committed to the agenda of sustainable development,
30,000 kms of PMGSY roads have been built using Green Technology,
Waste Plastic and Cold Mix Technology, thereby reducing carbon
footprint. With the changing economic scenario, it is important to upgrade
roads connecting villages to rural markets. For this PMGSY-III is envisaged
to upgrade 1,25,000kms of road length over the next five years, with an
estimated cost of 80,250 crore.

47. Considering the fact that majority of people still live in villages and
depend on agriculture and traditional industries, the ‘Scheme of Fund for
Upgradation and Regeneration of Traditional Industries’ (SFURTI) aims to
set up more Common Facility Centres (CFCs) to facilitate cluster based
development to make the traditional industries more productive,
profitable and capable for generating sustained employment
opportunities. The focused sectors are Bamboo, Honey and Khadi clusters.
The SFURTI envisions setting up 100 new clusters during 2019-20 which
should enable 50,000 artisans to join the economic value chain. Further,
to improve the technology of such industries, the Scheme for Promotion
of Innovation, Rural Industry and Entrepreneurship’ (ASPIRE) has been
consolidated for setting up of Livelihood Business Incubators (LBIs) and
Technology Business Incubators (TBIs). The Scheme contemplates to set
up 80 Livelihood Business Incubators (LBIs) and 20 Technology Business
Incubators (TBIs) in 2019-20 to develop 75,000 skilled entrepreneurs in
agro-rural industry sectors.

48. We will invest widely in agricultural infrastructure. We will support
private entrepreneurships in driving value-addition to farmers’ produce
from the field and for those from allied activities, like Bamboo and timber
from the hedges and for generating renewable energy. Annadata can also
be Urjadata. Dairying through cooperatives shall also be encouraged by
creating infrastructure for cattle feed manufacturing, milk procurement,
processing & marketing. I place my appreciation for our farmers who have
made India self-sufficient in pulses. I am sure they will repeat such a
success even in the production of oilseeds. Our import bill shall be
reduced by their Seva.

49. We also hope to form 10,000 new Farmer Producer Organizations,
to ensure economies of scale for farmers over the next five years.

50. This Government will work with State Governments to allow
farmers to benefit from e-NAM. The Agriculture Produce Marketing
Cooperatives (APMC) Act should not hamper farmers from getting a fair
price for their produce. Ease of doing business and ease of living both
should apply to farmers too. We shall go back to basics on one count: Zero
Budget Farming. We need to replicate this innovative model through
which in a few States farmers are already being trained in this practice.
Steps such as this can help in doubling our farmers’ income in time for our
75th year of Independence.

51. Ensuring India’s water security and providing access to safe and
adequate drinking water to all Indians is a priority of the Government. A
major step in this direction has been the constitution of the Jal Shakti
Mantralaya, integrating the Ministry of Water Resources, River
Development and Ganga Rejuvenation and Ministry of Drinking Water and
Sanitation. This new Mantralaya will look at the management of our water
resources and water supply in an integrated and holistic manner, and will
work with States to ensure Har Ghar Jal (piped water supply) to all rural
households by 2024 under the Jal Jeevan Mission. This Mission, under the
Department of Drinking Water and Sanitation, will focus on integrated
demand and supply side management of water at the local level, including
creation of local infrastructure for source sustainability like rainwater
harvesting, groundwater recharge and management of household
wastewater for reuse in agriculture. The Jal Jeevan Mission will converge
with other Central and State Government Schemes to achieve its
objectives of sustainable water supply management across the country.

52. The Government has identified 1592 Blocks which are critical and
over exploited, spread across 256 District for the Jal Shakti Abhiyan.
Besides using funds available under various Schemes, the Government will
also explore possibility of using additional funds available under the
Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority
(CAMPA) for this purpose.

53. Swachh Bharat Abhiyan has touched the very conscience of the
nation besides bringing enormous health and environmental benefits. This
noble Scheme, initiated in 2014, has achieved a resounding success. 9.6
crore toilets have been constructed since Oct 2, 2014. More than 5.6 lakh
villages have become Open Defecation Free (ODF). We have to build on
this success. We must not only sustain the behavioural change seen in
people but also harness the latest technologies available to transform
waste into energy. I now propose to expand the Swachh Bharat Mission to
undertake sustainable solid waste management in every village.

54. Under the Pradhan Mantri Gramin Digital Saksharta Abhiyan, over
two crore rural Indians have so far been made digitally literate. To bridge
rural-urban digital divide, Bharat-Net is targeting internet connectivity in
local bodies in every Panchayat in the country. This will be speeded up
with assistance from Universal Service Obligation Fund and under a Public
Private Partnership arrangement.

Shahree Bharat/Urban India

55. This Government sees the rapid urbanization of India as an
opportunity rather than a challenge. We have to make both our cities and
villages better using technology. This way we can help people live closer to
their home, stop migration into cities, provide essential services to all.

56. Under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Urban (PMAY-Urban), over
81 lakh houses with an investment of about 4.83 lakh crores have been
sanctioned of which construction has started in about 47 lakh houses.
Over 26 lakh houses have been completed of which nearly 24 lakh houses
have been delivered to the beneficiaries. There is large scale adoption of
new technologies for construction of these houses. Over 13 lakh houses
have so far been constructed using these new technologies.

57. More than 95% of cities also have been declared ODF. More than
45,000 public and community toilets across 1700 cities have been
uploaded on Google maps, covering more than 53% of India’s urban
population. Almost 1 crore citizens have downloaded Swachhata App.

58. The 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi is an apt occasion
for us to re-dedicate ourselves to the ideals of Mahatma Gandhi. Hon'ble
Prime Minister took the Sankalp of achieving Gandhiji’s resolve of Swachh
Bharat to make India Open Defecation Free by 2nd October 2019. I am
very satisfied and happy to report that this would be achieved by the 2nd
October. To mark this occasion, the Rashtriya Swachhta Kendra will be
inaugurated at Gandhi Darshan, Rajghat on 2nd October, 2019. A
Gandhipedia is also being developed by National Council for Science
Museums to sensitize youth and society at large about positive Gandhian

59. Indian Railways suburban and long-distance services do a
phenomenal task in cities like Mumbai and smaller cities. Railways will be
encouraged to invest more in suburban railways through Special Purpose
Vehicle (SPV) structures like Rapid Regional Transport System (RRTS)
proposed on the Delhi-Meerut route. I propose to enhance the metrorailway
initiatives by encouraging more PPP initiatives and ensuring
completion of sanctioned works, while supporting Transit Oriented
Development (TOD) to ensure commercial activity around transit hubs.
We are in the process of completing the dedicated freight corridor project
that will free up some of the existing railway network for passenger trains.

60. The Government will bring in a New National Education Policy to
transform India’s higher education system to one of the global best
education systems. The new Policy proposes major changes in both school
and higher education among others, better Governance systems and
brings greater focus on research and innovation.

61. We propose to establish a National Research Foundation (NRF) to
fund, coordinate and promote research in the country. NRF will assimilate
the research grants being given by various Ministries independent of each
other. NRF will ensure that the overall research eco-system in the country
is strengthened with focus on identified thrust areas relevant to our
national priorities and towards basic science without duplication of effort
and expenditure. We would work out a very progressive and research
oriented structure for NRF. The funds available with all Ministries will be
integrated in NRF. This would be adequately supplemented with
additional funds.

62. Massive online open courses through the SWAYAM initiative have
helped bridge the digital divide for disadvantaged section of the student
community. To up-grade the quality of teaching, the Global Initiative of
Academic Networks (GIAN) programme in higher education was started,
aimed at tapping the global pool of scientists and researchers. The
IMPRINT or IMPacting Research INnovation and Technology scheme
began as a Pan-IIT and IISc joint initiative to develop a roadmap for
research to solve major engineering and technology challenges in selected
domains needed by the country. Higher educational institutions are
becoming the centres of innovation.

63. These initiatives have up-graded the quality of education. There
was not a single Indian institution in the top 200 in the world university
rankings five years back. Due to concerted efforts by our institutions to
boost their standards and also project their credentials better, we have
three institutions now – two IITs and IISc Bangalore – in the top 200
bracket. This window is open now thanks to our efforts. We will continue
making concerted efforts to improve. An amount of 400 crore has been
provided under the head, “World Class Institutions”, for FY 2019-20, more
than three times the revised estimates for the previous year. India has the
potential to become a hub of higher education. I, therefore, propose to
start a programme, ‘Study in India’, that will focus on bringing foreign
students to study in our higher educational institutions.

64. The regulatory systems of higher education would be reformed
comprehensively to promote greater autonomy and focus on better
academic outcomes. A draft legislation for setting up Higher Education
Commission of India (HECI), would be presented in the year ahead.

65. Khelo India Scheme, launched in October, 2017, has created
awareness of sports as an integral part of wellness throughout the
country. The Government is committed to expand Khelo India Scheme and
to provide all necessary financial support. To popularize sports at all
levels, a National Sports Education Board for Development of
Sportspersons would be set up under Khelo India Scheme.

66. This Government recognizes and follows the teachings of Lord
Basveshwara, in particular the principles of Kayaka and Dasoha.
Implementing ‘Kayakave Kailasa’, the Government enables about 10
million youth to take up industry-relevant skill training through the
Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY). This is helping to create a
large pool of skilled manpower with speed and high standards.
Demographic trends worldwide show that major economies will face
severe labour shortages in the future. To prepare our youth to also take
up jobs overseas, we will increase focus on skill sets needed abroad
including language training. We will also lay focus on new-age skills like
Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things, Big Data, 3D Printing, Virtual
Reality and Robotics, which are valued highly both within and outside the
country, and offer much higher remuneration.

67. Drawing again on Lord Basveshwara, his principle of Dasoha
underlines most things this Government does. ‘Give It Up’ for giving up
LPG subsidy or the various pension schemes are on the principle of sharing
through distribution, for the wellness of the society.

68. The Government is proposing to streamline multiple labour laws
into a set of four labour codes. This will ensure that process of registration
and filing of returns will get standardized and streamlined. With various
labour related definitions getting standardized, it is expected that there
shall be less disputes.

69. We propose to start a television programme within the DD
bouquet of channels exclusively for start-ups. This shall serve as a
platform for promoting start-ups, discussing issues affecting their growth,
matchmaking with venture capitalists and for funding and tax planning.
This channel shall be designed and executed by start-ups themselves.
Later in this speech, I shall deal with taxation matters of the start-ups.

70. Stand-Up India Scheme has delivered enormous benefits. The
country is witnessing emergence of thousands of entrepreneurs from
women and also from the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, most of
them assisted to set up their businesses and industry with capital provided
under the Stand-Up India Scheme. Considering the beneficial results of the
Scheme and strong demand for its continuance by the SC and ST
communities, the Scheme would be continued for the entire period
coinciding with the 15th Finance Commission period of 2020-25. The
Banks will provide financial assistance for demand based businesses,
including for example for acquisition of scavenging machines and robots.

71. The Stand Up India Scheme has made human dignity and selfesteem
go up. “Kayakave Kailasa”. The Ministry of Petroleum & Natural
Gas has enabled SC/ST entrepreneurs in providing Bulk LPG
Transportation. In a matter of two years over 300 entrepreneurs have
emerged. Machines and robots have been deployed to do scavenging
which also saved the manual scavengers their dignity. The synthesis
between stand up and start up with commercial banks playing the catalyst
has brought this transformational change.

Ease of Living

72. This Government aims to bring greater ease of living in the lives of
its citizens. Digital payments are gaining acceptance everywhere including
by the Government. Use of technology is an effective way to ensure this.

73. Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan was launched on 5th March,
2019 by Hon’ble PM at Ahmedabad. The Scheme aims at providing 3,000
per month as pension on attaining the age of 60 to crores of workers in
unorganized and informal sectors. About 30 lakh workers have joined the

74. For good quality of life and ease of living, maintaining a cleaner
environment and ensuring sustainable energy use is vital. A programme of
mass scaling up of LED bulbs for widespread distribution at household
level was taken up resulting into massive replacement of incandescent
bulbs and CFLs in the country. Approximately 35 crore LED bulbs have
been distributed under UJALA Yojana leading to cost saving of 18,341
crores annually. India is going to be free of incandescent bulbs and CFL use
has already become miniscule. We will use the approach of mission LED
bulb method to promote the use of solar stoves and battery chargers in
the country.

75. To make railway travel a pleasant and satisfying experience for the
common citizen, we will launch a massive programme of railway station
modernization this year.

Naari Tu Narayani/Women

76. Swami Vivekananda in a letter to Swami Ramakrishnanda had said:
“There is no chance for the welfare of the world unless the condition of
women is improved. It is not possible for a bird to fly on one wing”. This
Government believes that we can make progress with greater women’s

77. In India’s growth story, particularly in the rural economy,
“grameen arth vyavastha” the role of women is a very sweet story. This
Government wishes to encourage and facilitate this role of women.

78. Gender analysis of the budget aimed at examining the budgetary
allocation through a gender lens has been in place for over a decade. I
propose to form a broad-based Committee with Government and private
stakeholders to evaluate and suggest action for moving forward.

79. There is no segment of human life where the contribution of
women is not significant. This Government firmly believes that the socioeconomic transformation that is taking place particularly in the last
decade, Indian women’s role and leadership is distinct. The recent
elections have shown record turnout of women voters at par with men.
We also have a record 78 women MPs here. This reinforces our approach
of going beyond just women-centric-policy making to building women-led
initiatives and movements.

80. This Government has supported and encouraged women
entrepreneurship through various schemes such as MUDRA, Stand UP
India and the Self Help Group (SHG) movement. In order to further
encourage women enterprise, I propose to expand the Women SHG
interest subvention programme to all districts. Furthermore, for every
verified women SHG member having a Jan Dhan Bank Account, an
overdraft of 5,000 shall be allowed. One woman in every SHG will also be
made eligible for a loan up to 1 lakh under the MUDRA Scheme.

India’s Soft Power

81. India’s soft power is appreciated in so many different ways. Some
simple examples: In the last three years on International Yoga Day, Yoga
has been practiced in large numbers in 192 countries around the world
Yoga has been practiced in large numbers. Mahatma Gandhi’s favourite
bhajan “Vaishnav Jana To Tene Kahiye” was sung by the respective lead
artists in 40 countries. The annual “Bharat Ko Jaano” quiz competition is
sought after as an event to participate by not only NRIs but also several

82. I propose to consider issuing Aadhaar Card for Non-Resident
Indians with Indian Passports after their arrival in India without waiting for
180 days.

83. I propose to launch a Mission which will integrate our traditional
artisans and their creative products with global markets. Wherever
necessary we shall obtain patents and geographical indicators for them.
With this aim, for the first time in this August House, I declare that we will
launch a mission of linking creative industry with the economy and
wherever it requires protecting Intellectual Property rights taking it to the
National and International Market front.

84. To give further impetus to India’s growing influence and leadership
in the international community, Government decided to open Indian
Embassies and High Commissions abroad in countries where India does
not have a Resident Diplomatic Mission as yet. Accordingly, in March
2018, Government approved opening of 18 new Indian Diplomatic
Missions in Africa. Five Embassies have already been opened in Rwanda,
Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Republic of Guinea, and Burkina Faso in the
year 2018-19. Government intends to open another four new Embassies
in the year 2019-20. This will not only increase the footprint of India’s
overseas presence, but also enable us to provide better and more
accessible public services, especially to the local Indian community in
these countries.

85. In line with our ancient wisdom, India has always pursued a policy
of economic cooperation with countries through bilateral and regional
coordination. Indian Development Assistance Scheme (IDEAS) provides
concessional financing for projects and contributes to infrastructure
development and capacity building in the recipient developing countries.
Mindful of our position as the sixth largest economy, we will look at
alternative development models which include private sector equity,
multilateral financing, contributions from corporates, non-residents etc.
I propose to revamp the IDEAS scheme during the current financial year.

86. The Government is developing 17 iconic Tourism Sites into world
class tourist destinations and to serve as a model for other tourism sites.
The Iconic Tourism Sites would enhance visitor experience which would
lead to increase visits of both domestic and international tourists at these

87. With the objective of preserving rich tribal cultural heritage, a
digital repository is developed where documents, folk songs, photos &
videos regarding their evolution, place of origin, lifestyle, architecture,
education level, traditional art, folk dances and other anthropological
details of the tribes in India are stored. The repository will further be
enriched and strengthened.

Banking and Financial Sector

88. Financial gains from cleaning of the banking system are now amply
visible. NPAs of commercial banks have reduced by over 1 lakh crore
over the last year, record recovery of over 4 lakh crore due to IBC and
other measures has been effected over the last four years, provision
coverage ratio is now at its highest in seven years, and domestic credit
growth has risen to 13.8%. Government has smoothly carried out
consolidation, reducing the number of Public Sector Banks by eight. At
the same time, as many as six Public Sector Banks have been enabled to
come out of Prompt Corrective Action framework.

89. Having addressed legacy issues, Public Sector Banks are now
proposed to be further provided 70,000 crore capital to boost credit for
a strong impetus to the economy. To further improve ease of living, they
will leverage technology, offering online personal loans and doorstep
banking, and enabling customers of one Public Sector Bank to access
services across all Public Sector Banks. In addition, Government will
initiate steps to empower accountholders to remedy the current situation
in which they do not have control over deposit of cash by others in their
accounts. Reforms will also be undertaken to strengthen governance in
Public Sector Banks.

90. Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) are playing an
extremely important role in sustaining consumption demand as well as
capital formation in small and medium industrial segment. NBFCs that are
fundamentally sound should continue to get funding from banks and
mutual funds without being unduly risk averse. For purchase of high-rated
pooled assets of financially sound NBFCs, amounting to a total of Rupees
one lakh crore during the current financial year, Government will provide
one time six months' partial credit guarantee to Public Sector Banks for
first loss of up to 10%. Further, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is the regulator
for NBFCs. However, RBI has limited regulatory authority over NBFCs.
Appropriate proposals for strengthening the regulatory authority of RBI
over NBFCs are being placed in the Finance Bill.

91. NBFCs which do public placement of debt have to maintain a
Debenture Redemption Reserve (DRR) and in addition, a special reserve as
required by RBI, has also to be maintained. To allow NBFCs to raise funds
in public issues, the requirement of creating a DRR, which is currently
applicable for only public issues as private placements are exempt, will be
done away with.

92. To bring more participants, especially NBFCs, not registered as
NBFCs-Factor, on the TReDS platform, amendment in the Factoring
Regulation Act, 2011 is necessary and steps will be taken to allow all
NBFCs to directly participate on the TReDS platform.

93. Efficient and conducive regulation of the housing sector is
extremely important in our context. The National Housing Bank (NHB),
besides being the refinancer and lender, is also regulator of the housing
finance sector. This gives a somewhat conflicting and difficult mandate to
NHB. I am proposing to return the regulation authority over the housing
finance sector from NHB to RBI. Necessary proposals have been placed in
the Finance Bill.

94. Government has announced its intention to invest 100 lakh crore
in infrastructure over the next five years. To this end, it is proposed to set
up an expert committee to study the current situation relating to longterm
finance and our past experience with development finance
institutions, and recommend the structure and required flow of funds
through development finance institutions.

95. Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA)
implements and regulates the National Pension System (NPS) and Atal
Pension Yojana through various intermediaries including, inter-alia, the
NPS Trust. Keeping in view the wider interest of the subscribers and to
maintain arm’s length relationship of the NPS Trust with PFRDA, steps will
be taken to separate the NPS Trust from PFRDA with appropriate
organizational structure.

96. To facilitate on-shoring of international insurance transactions and
to enable opening of branches by foreign reinsurers in the International
Financial Services Centre, it is proposed to reduce Net Owned Fund
requirement from 5,000 crore to 1,000 crore.

97. Government has been following the policy of disinvestment in nonfinancial
public sector undertakings maintaining Government stake not to
go below 51%. Government is considering, in case where the Undertaking
is still to be retained in Government control, to go below 51% to an
appropriate level on case to case basis. Government has also decided to
modify present policy of retaining 51% Government stake to retaining
51% stake inclusive of the stake of Government controlled institutions.

98. In order to improve the capital flows into the Indian economy, it is
important to align domestic corporate systems and practices with global
ones. It is also appreciated that global finance movement in equity uses
certain parameters to evaluate the stocks in which they choose to invest.
Government intends to further encourage retail participation in CPSEs
which, of late has shown very encouraging upward trend. In order to
provide additional investment space, the Government would realign its
holding in CPSEs, including Banks to permit greater availability of its
shares and to improve depth of its market.

99. Strategic disinvestment of select CPSEs would continue to remain a
priority of this Government. In view of current macro-economic
parameters, Government would not only reinitiate the process of strategic
disinvestment of Air India, but would offer more CPSEs for strategic
participation by the private sector.

100. Government is setting an enhanced target of 1,05,000 crore of
disinvestment receipts for the financial year 2019-20. The Government
will undertake strategic sale of PSUs. The Government will also continue
to do consolidation of PSUs in the non-financial space as well.

101. ETFs have proved to be an important investment opportunity for
retail investors and has turned out to be a good instrument for
Government of India’s divestment programme. To expand this further,
Government will offer an investment option in ETFs on the lines of Equity
Linked Savings Scheme (ELSS). This would also encourage long term
investment in CPSEs.

102. For bringing better public ownership of the PSUs and also bring
greater commercial and market orientation of the listed PSUs, the
Government will take all necessary steps to meet public shareholding
norms of 25% for all listed PSUs and raise the foreign shareholding limits
to maximum permissible sector limits for all PSU companies which are
part of Emerging Market Index.

103. India’s sovereign external debt to GDP is among the lowest globally
at less than 5%. The Government would start raising a part of its gross
borrowing programme in external markets in external currencies. This will
also have beneficial impact on demand situation for the government
securities in domestic market.

104. New series of coins of One Rupee, Two Rupees, Five Rupees, Ten
Rupees and Twenty Rupees, easily identifiable to the visually impaired,
were released by the Hon’ble Prime Minister on 7th March, 2019. These
new coins will be made available for public use shortly.

105. In the first 50 years after Independence we emphasized on
Rights. Marking 75 years of our Independence, we should place emphasis
on our Duty towards India, without undermining Rights. Thinkers, all over
the world, have supported the argument that in performing one’s duty
protection of one’s rights is inherent. For the bright future of India, when
again in 2022, we will remember our freedom fighters, we should
dedicate ourselves to serve our nation.

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