The Indian government recently announced the 2023 Union Budget, outlining the financial plan for the country for the upcoming fiscal year. The budget, presented by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman focuses on strengthening the economy and boosting growth through several measures aimed at key sectors. Here are some of the key highlights of the Indian Budget 2023:
- The per capita income has more than doubled to ₹1.97 lakh in nine years.
- India’s economy has grown from being the 10th largest in the world to the
5th largest in the past nine years.
- The EPFO membership has more than doubled to 27 crores.
- In 2022, 7,400 crore digital payments, worth ₹126 lakh crore, were made through UPI.
- 11.7 crore household toilets were constructed under the Swachh Bharat Mission.
- 9.6 crore LPG connections were provided under the Ujjwala scheme.
- 102 crore people received the covid vaccine, with a total of 220 crore vaccinations.
- There are 47.8 crore PM Jan Dhan bank accounts.
- 44.6 crore people have insurance coverage under the PM Suraksha Bima and PM Jeevan Jyoti Yojana.
- Over 11.4 crore farmers received a cash transfer of ₹2.2 lakh crore under the
PM Kisan Samman Nidhi.
- The seven priorities of the budget, known as ‘Saptarishi’, are inclusive development, last-mile connectivity, infrastructure and investment, unlocking potential, green growth, empowering youth, and strengthening the financial sector.
- The Atmanirbhar Clean Plant Program, with a budget of ₹2200 crore, will be launched to improve the availability of high-quality, disease-free planting material for horticultural crops.
- 157 new nursing colleges will be established in conjunction with the 157 medical colleges established since 2014.
- The centre plans to recruit 38,800 teachers and support staff for the 740 Eklavya Model Residential Schools over the next three years, serving 3.5 lakh tribal students.
- The budget for PM Awas Yojana has been increased by 66% to over ₹79,000 crore.
- The Railways will receive the highest ever capital outlay of ₹2.40 lakh crore, which is about nine times the amount allocated in 2013-14.
- The Urban Infrastructure Development Fund will be established through priority sector lending shortfall, managed by the National Housing Bank, and will be used to create urban infrastructure in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.
- The entity DigiLocker will be established for MSMEs, large businesses, and charitable trusts to store and share documents online securely.
- 100 labs will be set up for 5G services-based application development to unlock new opportunities, business models, and employment potential.
- 500 new ‘waste to wealth’ plants under the GOBARdhanscheme will be established with a total investment of ₹10,000 crores to promote a circular economy. A 5% mandate for compressed biogas will also be introduced for organizations marketing natural and biogas.
- The centre aims to facilitate one crore farmers to adopt natural farming over the next three years by establishing 10,000 Bio-Input Resource Centres.
- Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 4.0 will be launched to skill lakhs of youth in new-age courses such as coding, AI, robotics, mechatronics, IoT, 3D printing, drones, and soft skills.
- 30 Skill India International Centres will be established across different states to provide international skill development opportunities for the youth
- The Pradhan Mantri PVTG Development Mission will receive Rs. 15,000 crore over the next three years as part of the Development Action Plan for the Scheduled Tribes.
- A digital epigraphy museum, known as the Bharat Shared Repository of Inscriptions, will be established and will digitize one lakh ancient inscriptions in the first stage.
- The Centre’s “Effective Capital Expenditure” will be Rs. 13.7 lakh crore.
- State governments will continue to receive a 50-year interest-free loan for one more year to incentivize investment in infrastructure and complementary policy actions.
- All cities and towns will have to transition from manual to machine-based desludging of septic tanks and sewers.
- iGOTKarmayogi, an integrated online training platform, will be launched to provide ongoing learning opportunities for government employees and to facilitate a people-centric approach.
- PM-PRANAM (PM Programme for Restoration, Awareness, Nourishment and Amelioration of Mother Earth) will be launched to incentivize states and Union Territories to promote alternative fertilizers and balanced use of chemical fertilizers.
- The Green Credit Programme will be notified under the Environment (Protection) Act to incentivize and mobilize additional resources for environmentally sustainable and responsive actions.
- The Amrit Dharohar scheme will be implemented over the next three years to encourage optimal use of wetlands, enhance bio-diversity, carbon stock, eco-tourism opportunities, and income generation for local communities.
- A unified Skill India Digital platform will be launched to enable demand-based formal skilling, link with employers including MSMEs, and facilitate access to entrepreneurship schemes.
- At least 50 tourist destinations will be selected through challenge mode and developed as a complete package for domestic and foreign tourists.
- Sector-specific skilling and entrepreneurship development will be integrated to achieve the objectives of the Dekho Apna Desh initiative.
- The Vibrant Villages Programme will facilitate tourism infrastructure and amenities in border villages.
- States will be encouraged to set up a Unity Mall to promote and sell their own and other states’ ODOPs (One District, One Product), GI products, and handicrafts.
PART – B
The Income Tax Department is continuously striving to improve its services to taxpayers by making tax compliance easier and more efficient. To further enhance these services, the department is planning to introduce a new, advanced Common IT Return Form to provide greater convenience to taxpayers, as well as improve its grievance redressal system.
New tax rates
|Total Income (Rs)||Rate (per cent)|
|Up to 3,00,000||Nil|
|From 3,00,001 to 6,00,000||5|
|From 6,00,001 to 9,00,000||10|
|From 9,00,001 to 12,00,000||15|
|From 12,00,001 to 15,00,000||20|
- In the new personal income tax regime, the rebate limit has been raised from Rs. 5 lakhs to Rs. 7 lakhs, meaning that individuals with an income of up to Rs. 7 lakhs will not be required to pay any tax. Additionally, the tax structure in the new regime will be revised to reduce the number of slabs from six to five and increase the tax exemption limit to Rs. 3 lakhs, providing significant relief to taxpayers.
- The limit for tax exemption on leave encashment for non-government salaried employees at retirement has also been increased to Rs. 25 lakhs.
- Primary Agricultural Co-operative Societies (PACS) and Primary Co-operative Agriculture and Rural Development Banks (PCARDBs) will now have a higher limit of Rs. 2 lakh per member for cash deposits and loans. Meanwhile, cooperative societies will have a higher limit of Rs. 3 crores for TDS on cash withdrawals.
- The date for start-ups to receive income tax benefits has been extended from 31.03.23 to 31.3.24, and the carry forward of losses on change of shareholding has been increased from seven to ten years. The deduction from capital gains on investment in residential houses under sections 54 and 54F has been capped at Rs. 10 crores for a more effective distribution of tax concessions and exemptions.
- For insurance policies with very high values, the exemption for income tax from policy proceeds will be limited. For life insurance policies (excluding ULIPs) issued after 1st April 2023, the aggregate premium must be less than Rs. 5 lakhs to receive income tax exemption.
- Finally, the Agniveer Fund has been granted EEE status, and payments received from the Agniveer Corpus Fund by Agnipath Scheme, 2022 participants will be exempt from taxes. Contributions made by either the Agniveer or the Central Government to the Agniveer’s Seva Nidhi account will also be deductible in computing total income.
The government has made several changes to the customs duties, cesses, and surcharges on various goods. The number of basic customs duty rates on goods, excluding textiles and agriculture, has been reduced to 13 from 21.
- Minor modifications have been made to the duties on toys, bicycles, automobiles, and naphtha. Excise duty has been waived for compressed biogas that has been paid in GST and blended with compressed natural gas.
- Customs duty has been extended until March 31, 2024, for specified capital goods/machinery used in the manufacture of lithium-ion cells for EVs.
- Customs duty on camera lenses and their inputs/parts for use in the manufacture of camera modules for cell phones has been reduced to zero, and the concessional duty on lithium-ion cells for batteries has been extended for another year.
- The basic customs duty has been reduced on parts of open cells of TV panels to 2.5 percent, while the duty on electric kitchen chimneys has been increased to 15 percent from 7.5 percent.
- The basic customs duty on heat coils for electric kitchen chimneys has been reduced to 15 percent from 20 percent, and denatured ethyl alcohol used in the chemical industry has been exempt from basic customs duty. The duty on key inputs for domestic shrimp feed manufacturing has been reduced, as has the duty on seeds used in the manufacture of lab-grown diamonds.
- Import duties on Silver Dore, bars, and articles have been increasedThe basic customs duty exemption for raw materials for the manufacture of CRGO Steel, ferrous scrap, and nickel cathode has been continued, as has the concessional BCD of 2.5 percent on copper scrap.
- The basic customs duty rate on compounded rubber has been increased to 25 percent from 10 percent or 30 per kg, whichever is lower.
- The National Calamity Contingent Duty (NCCD) on specified cigarettes has been revised upwards by approximately 16 percent.
- Several legislative changes have been made to the Customs Act, of 1962, the Customs Tariff Act, and the CGST Act. The Customs Act has been amended to specify a time limit of nine months from the date of filing an application for the Settlement Commission to pass a final order.
FAQs related to Union Budget 2023
Q1. What is the date for the presentation of the Union Budget 2023 by the Government of India?
Ans: The Union Budget 2023 will be presented by the Government of India on February 1, 2023.
Q2. Who will be responsible for presenting the Union Budget 2023?
Ans: The finance minister will present the Union Budget 2023.
Q3. When will the Union Budget 2023 be presented in the parliament in relation to the Economic Survey 2023?
Ans : The Union Budget 2023 will be presented in the parliament one day after the Economic Survey 2023.