Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman delivered her sixth budget on February 1. This budget, considered an interim one, precedes the upcoming general elections later this year. The Interim Budget for 2024 prioritized youth and women empowerment, emphasizing fiscal consolidation and sustaining capital expenditure. FM Sitharaman revised the fiscal deficit target for FY25 to 5.1% of the GDP.
Finance Minister Sitharaman highlighted the government’s commitment to addressing the needs of various segments of society. She emphasized the transformative changes in the Indian economy and the implementation of structural reforms. The key focus areas included women, youth, the poor, and farmers.
Interim Budget 2024: Highlights
|The government claimed to have lifted 25 crore people out of poverty over the last decade.
|Free food was provided to 80 crore people through various schemes.
|Direct Benefit Transfers
|Direct Benefit Transfers amounting to Rs. 34 lakh crore through the PM Jan Dhan Yojana accounts resulted in savings of ₹2.7 lakh crore.
|Support for Artisans and Entrepreneurs
|The PM Vishwakarma Yojana provided comprehensive support to artisans.
|Credit assistance was extended to 78 lakh street vendors under the PM-SVANidhi scheme.
|30 crore Mudra Yojana loans were disbursed to women entrepreneurs.
|Over 1.4 crore youth were trained under the Skill India Mission.
|43 crore loans were sanctioned under PM Mudra Yojana.
|The ‘Lakhpati Didi’ scheme will be expanded to empower rural women and boost the rural economy.
|Subsidies for the construction of 30 million affordable houses in rural areas.
|Cervical cancer vaccination and integration of maternal and child health care schemes into a comprehensive program.
|Expansion of the Ayushman Bharat scheme to include all ASHA workers, Anganwadi workers, and helpers.
|Promotion of ‘Nano DAP’ for various crops across all agro-climactic zones.
|Formulation of strategies for achieving self-reliance in oilseeds.
|Infrastructure and Development
|Establishment of the Matsya Sampada department to address the needs of fishermen.
|Conversion of 40,000 normal rail bogeys to Vande Bharat standards.
|Focus on metro development for transit-oriented progress.
|Environment and Energy
|Initiatives to achieve Net Zero by 2070, including funding for offshore wind energy generation and support for the e-vehicle sector.
|Increased capital expenditure to ₹11.11 lakh crore for 2024-25.
|Commitment to fiscal consolidation, aiming for a fiscal deficit of 4.5% in 2025-26.
|Maintenance of the same tax rates for direct and indirect taxes, including import duties.
|Government borrowings for 2024-25 set at Rs. 14.13 lakh crore (gross) and Rs. 11.75 lakh crore (net), lower than the previous fiscal year.