Budget Highlights: Update

* Direct Benefit Transfer in fertilisers on pilot basis in few districts

* To reduce multiplicity of taxes and cascading, 13 taxes with collections of less than Rs.50 crore a year abolished * Income tax deptartment will expand e-sahyog to assist small taxpayers * Scope of e-assessment to be expanded to seven mega cities to simplify compliance for taxpayers * Taxation proposals to increase government revenue by Rs.19,610 crore * Penalty to be 50 percent of tax in income under-reporting cases, 200 percent in misreporting of facts * Tax arrears can be paid in lieu of interest liabilities in retrospective taxation cases * Direct Benefit Transfer in fertilisers on pilot basis in few districts * Limited tax compliance window from June 1 - September 30 for declaring undisclosed income at 45 percent including surcharge and penalties * Clean energy cess increased from Rs.200/tonne to Rs.400/tonne on coal, lignite and peat * Moving towards a low tax regime with non-litigious approach * Committed to provide a stable and predictable taxation regime * Relief of Rs.3,000 per year to taxpayers with income below Rs.5 Lakh per year to benefit one crore taxpayers * Surcharge on income tax for incomes exceeding Rs.1 crore per annum raised from 12 percent to 15 percent  * Service tax exempted for general insurance schemes under Niramayi Swasthya Bima Yojana * Suitable changes to be made in customs and excise duty rates to improve competitiveness and boost Make In India * Plan, Non-Plan distinction to be removed from 2017-18 * For income below Rs.5 lakh per annum, tax ceiling has been raised from Rs.2,000 to Rs.5,000 * Relief to those in rented houses: Deduction raised from Rs.24,000 to Rs.60,000 under Section 88G  * Corporate income tax: Incentives for new manufacturing companies and relatively small enterprise companies * Fiscal deficit for 2016-17 targeted at 3.5 percent * Committed to implementing General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAAR) from April 1, 2017 * New policy for managing assets of public enterprises * Comprehensive approach to be adopted for government investment in central public sector enterprises * Three initiatives for better delivery of public services * Increased allocation of Rs.1,80,000 crore under PM MUDRA Yojana * Market Stabilization Fund for Pulses gets Rs.900 crore * Financial Data Management Centre for integrated data collection and analysis * RBI Act being amended to provide statutory basis for monetary policy framework * 100 percent FDI to be allowed through FIPB route in food products produced and marketed in India * Department of Disinvestment to be renamed Department of Investment and Public Asset Management * Comprehensive plan being drawn up to be implemented in the next 15-20 years for exploiting nuclear energy * Government to provide health insurance of up to Rs.1 lakh per family; 300 generic drug stores to be opened under PM Jan Aushadhi Yojana * Roads and highways allocated Rs.55,000 crore, 50,000 km of state highways to be taken up for upgradaing to national highways * Stand Up India scheme allocated Rs.500 crore for SCs, STs women entrepreneurs * Government to incentivise gas production from deep sea and other unutilised deep sources * Public Utility Resolution of Disputes Bill for resolution of infra sector disputes * Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojan gets Rs.1,700 crore  * Digital depository for school leaving certificates * Higher education financing agency to be set up with fund of Rs.1,000 crore * National Skill Development Mission has imparted training to 76 lakh youth; 1,500 multi-skill training institutes to be set up * Model Shops and Establishments Bill to be circulated for voluntary adoption by states  * Current account deficit down to $14.4 billion * Rs.2.87 lakh crore for rural and urban local bodies * Animal welfare programme, animal health card, e-marketing platform for connecting breeders * 100 percent village electrification to be achieved by May 1, 2018 * Appreciation for 75 lakh middle class and lower middle class families for willingly giving up LPG Subsidy  * Rs.19,000 crore allotted for PMGSY * Rs.8.5 lakh crore of agricultural credit targetted in 2015-16; and Rs.9 lakh crore in 2016-17  * Rs.35,984 crore allocated for agriculture in 2016-17 * Five lakh acres to be brought under organic farming over three-year period * MGNREGA to get Rs.38,500 crore * Recapitalisation of banks during next fiscal * Prudent fiscal policy needed, domestic demand should be raised, reforms need to be carried out  * Farm, rural sector, infra and social sector to get more funds * Need to prioritise expenditure given recommendations of 7th Pay Commission and OROP implementation * Nine pillars for reforming India, among them agriculture, social sector, education, infra, fiscal discipline, and tax reforms * Presenting budget when global economy in a serious crisis  * Amidst global headwinds, the Indian economy has held its own * Converted challenges we inherited into opportunities * CPI inflation down to 5.4 percent from 9 percent-plus, bringing big relief to the public * Forex reserves at highest-ever level  

IANS