New Delhi: It did not happen in this Budget, but it may happen soon. PM Narendra Modi’s plan to put Rs 1500 cash in your account every month has not been shelved. An indication to this was given by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday.
Speaking during the debate on the budget in the Lok Sabha, Jaitley did not rule out rule out implementation of universal basic income. However, he said that it was possible only after the existing subsidy regime was overhauled. He said that this concept had also found mention in the budget speech of Jammu and Kashmir finance minister Haseeb Drabu. The Economic Survey 2016-17 too had spoken about it. Jaitley said it is time to debate about this.
“Whatever subsidies are given by the centre and the states are combined and poor households are given a universal basic income. It has to be through replacement. It cannot happen through an addition (to the existing subsidy regime) because the resources will not be available,” Jaitley added.
Meanwhile, sources say that Universal Basic Income scheme could be announced in the next Budget, which is likely to be the last before the general elections.
The resources for this will be largely collected by seizing black money and penalising black money hoarders. Over two-thirds of old notes deposited in banks have come in the form of deposits over Rs 2 lakh. This totals around Rs 10.38 lakh crore.
“These are the immediate high-level cases, which apparently appear to be odd. The Operation Clean Money targets them in the first phase,” Revenue Secretary Hansmukh Adhia had said recently.