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The Indian budget is the annual financial statement presented by the Union government of India, detailing the estimated receipts and expenditures for the upcoming financial year. The first budget of independent India was presented on November 26, 1947 by India's first finance minister, R.K. Shanmukham Chetty.

Since then, the Union budget has been presented annually, usually on the last working day of February, by the finance minister of India. The budget outlines the government's fiscal and economic policies for the year and serves as a key economic and fiscal policy tool for the government.

Over the years, the Indian budget has undergone significant changes, with a shift from a primarily control-oriented approach to a more market-oriented approach. Today, the budget is widely anticipated by the public and the business community and is seen as an important indicator of the government's economic priorities and policies.

  • Increased Spending on Social Sector: The government has increased its spending on social sector schemes such as health, education, and rural development in recent years, with the aim of improving the standard of living of the people and reducing poverty.
  • Infrastructure Development: The government has emphasized the importance of infrastructure development in the budget, with a focus on developing transportation, energy, and communication networks, and improving access to basic services for all citizens.
  • Tax Reforms: The government has undertaken several tax reforms, including the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), aimed at simplifying the tax system and increasing tax revenues.
  • Agricultural Reforms: The government has taken several steps to improve the agricultural sector, including increasing investment in irrigation and rural infrastructure, and providing support to farmers through subsidies and credit facilities.

These are just a few of the major budget decisions taken by the Indian government in recent years. The budget is an important tool for the government to implement its economic and fiscal 3policies, and its decisions have a significant impact on the country's economy and people.

Budget Highlights 2023

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget 2023 on Wednesday, the fifth budget of Modi 2.0. Nirmala Sitharaman stated in the last full-fledged Budget before the general elections next year that the Indian economy is on the right track and would have a bright future. Sitharaman proposed large adjustments in tax slabs under the new tax regime, as well as a significant increase in allocation for railways and capital investment.

Budget 2023 goals include:

  • Providing enough possibilities for citizens, particularly youth.
  • Providing a strong push to growth and employment creation.
  • Increasing macroeconomic stability.
  • To aim for women's empowerment in Budget 2023.
  • To enable women's self-help groups to advance to the next stage of economic empowerment.
  • Assisting self-help groups with raw material supply, branding, and product marketing

Here is a sector-by-sector breakdown of the major initiatives proposed by Finance Minister Sitharaman in Budget 2023:

Income tax payers:

  • The existing tax regime remains unchanged.
  • The new tax regime will be the default tax regime. Citizens can, however, choose the old tax scheme.
  • In the new tax regime, there is no tax on income up to Rs 7.5 lakh per year (with inclusion of standard deduction)
  • In the new tax regime, the government proposes lowering the maximum surcharge rate from 37% to 25%.
  • Only 45000/- rupees in taxes for individual with annual income of 9lakh rupees.
  • 1.5 lakh tax for income of rs.15 lakh down from 1.87lakh.
  • 50000/- standard deduction to taxpayers has been introduced.
  • Exemption given to payment received by agniveers.
  • Insurance policy with premium of over 5 lakh was also given tax exemption.
  • Government proposes TDS for online games winning at the time of withdrawal.
  • Higher limit provided to co-operative societies on TDS till 3 crores on cash withdrawal.
  • Mechanism for grievance redressal to be strengthen.

Change in 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
Above 15,00,000 30

What is cheaper:

  • Mobiles
  • Television
  • Diamonds (lab grown)
  • Shrimp feed
  • Machinery required for lithium-ion batteries
  • Raw goods for the EV industries

What is more expensive:

  • Cigarettes
  • Silver
  • Compound rubber
  • Imitation jewellery
  • Imported toys
  • Articles made from gold bars
  • Luxury imported cars

Saving schemes announcement:

  • Maximum limit for depositing money in senior citizen saving scheme to be increased till 30 lakhs.
  • For joint accounts the monthly income scheme to be doubled to 15 lakhs.
  • Mahila Samman Saving Certificate, a one-time new saving scheme for women, will be available for two years, until March 2025.
  • It will provide a deposit facility of up to Rs 2 lakh in the name of women or girls for a period of two years at a fixed interest rate of 7.5% with the option of partial withdrawal.

Railways receive a significant boost:

  • Railways were allocated Rs 2.4 lakh crore in FY24.
  • It is the greatest ever allocation for Railways and is roughly nine times greater than FY14 funding.
  • Track renewal funding has been enhanced from Rs 15,388.05 crore in RE 2022-23 to Rs 17,296.84 crore this year.
  • By August 2023, the Railways expects to have 75 Vande Bharat trains in service.

Capex increased capital investment by 33% to Rs 10 lakh crore,

  • A high increase of 33% for the third year in a row, to boost economic potential and job creation, crowd-in private investments, and provide a cushion against global headwinds.
  • The centre's effective capital expenditure will be Rs 13.7 lakh crore.
  • In FY24, capital investment will account for 3.3% of GDP.
  • In FY24, the Centre's effective capital expenditure was Rs 13.7 lakh.
  • A new Infrastructure Finance Secretariat has been established to improve opportunities for private infrastructure investment.

Defence budget grew by 13% to Rs 5.94 lakh crore, up from Rs 5.25 lakh crore last year.

  • A total of Rs 1.62 lakh crore has been set aside for capital spending, which includes the procurement of new weapons, aircraft, warships, and other military hardware.
  • The budgetary amount for capital outlay for 2022-23 was Rs 1.52 lakh crore.
  • The Border Roads Organisation's capital budget has been increased to Rs 5,000 crore.
  • The Indian Air Force had the greatest capital outlay, at Rs 57,137.09 crore.
  • A major investment of Rs 52,804 crore has been made up for the Indian Navy.
  • The Army's capital outlay is estimated to reach Rs 37,241 crore.
  • The allocation to the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) is Rs 23,264 crore.

Fiscal position: The fiscal deficit is expected to be less than 4.5 percent by 2025-26.

  • The fiscal deficit objective of 6.4% in FY23 was maintained in the Revised Estimate; it was cut to 5.9% in FY24.
  • In FY24, gross market borrowing is expected to be Rs 15.43 lakh crore, while net market borrowing is expected to be Rs 11.8 lakh crore.
  • The revised estimate for FY23 net tax collections is Rs 20.9 lakh crore.
  • The revised total spending estimate for FY23 is Rs 41.9 lakh crore.
  • FY23 total receipts other than borrowing revised estimate of Rs 24.3 lakh crore FY24 net tax receipts expected at Rs 23.3 lakh crore


  • The revised loan guarantee for MSMEs would go into effect on April 1, 2023, with a corpus inflow of Rs 9,000 crore.
  • The proposal would allow for an additional Rs 2 lakh crore in collateral-free guaranteed loans while also lowering the cost of lending by roughly 1%.


  • The Union Budget Mission has earmarked Rs 89,155 crore to the health sector in order to eliminate sickle cell anaemia by 2047.
  • A new pharmaceutical research programme will be developed, and industry will be urged to invest in research.
  • The Department of Health and Family Welfare has been allotted Rs 86,175 crore of the Rs 89,155 crore, while the Department of Health Research has been allocated Rs 2,980 crore.
  • The Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana budget allocation for 2023-2024 is Rs 3,365 crore.
  • Among these central sector programmes, the National Health Mission's budget allocation has been enhanced from Rs 28,974.29 crore.
  • The AYUSH ministry's budget allocation has been enhanced from Rs 2,845.75 crore.
  • The National Digital Health Mission (NHM) budget has been enhanced from Rs 140 crore to Rs 341.02 crore.
  • The funding for the National Tele Mental Health Programme has been enhanced from Rs 121 crore to Rs 133.73 crore.
  • The budget for autonomous bodies increases from Rs 10,348.17 crore in 2022-23 to Rs 17,322.55 crore in 2023-24.
  • The ICMR budget has been raised from Rs 2,116.73 crore to Rs 2,359.58 crore.


  • The government is considering changes to the Banking Regulation Act in order to improve bank governance.


  • Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana is a Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 4.0
  • 30 Skill India Foreign Centres will be established across several states to prepare youth for international chances.
  • Direct Benefit Transfer in the context of a pan
  • In three years, the India National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme will provide stipend support to 47 lakh youth.

Clean Energy

  • Priority capital of Rs 35,000 crores for the energy transition
  • The Environment Protection Act will be used to notify the green credit scheme.
  • Battery storage will receive financing to bridge the viability gap.
  • The government's support for the establishment of 4,000 MwH battery energy storage capacity under the National Green Hydrogen mission, with an outlay of Rs 19,700 crore, will facilitate the economy's transition to low carbon intensity, reduce reliance on fossil fuel imports, and position the country as a technology and market leader.

Aviation and highways:

  • 50 new airports, helipads, water aero drones, and advanced landing zones will be built to increase regional air connectivity.
  • The Union Budget 2023-24 includes an increased allocation of Rs 2.70 lakh crore for the roads sector.
  • The allocation to NHAI has increased by 13.90% to Rs 1.62 lakh crore for 2023-24.

Online services

  • The scope of services in DigiLocker will be enlarged, and 100 labs for developing apps that will employ 5G services will be established in engineering colleges.
  • Smart classrooms, precision farming, and healthcare applications will all be covered in labs.
  • The third phase of E-courts projects would be launched with a Rs 7,000 crore investment.
  • Leading industry players will collaborate to create scalable solutions for the health, agriculture, and other sectors.


  • Pm awaas yojana to be enhanced 66% to more than 79,000 crores.

No interest loans to states:

  • The centre will continue the 50-year interest free loan to the state governments for an additional one more year.


  • Three artificial intelligence excellence centres will be established in prestigious educational institutions.
  • In addition to the 157 medical colleges that have been created since 2014, 157 additional nursing colleges will be established.
  • Eklavaya Model Residential Schools will be built during the following three years. The government will hire 38,800 teachers and support staff for 740 schools that would serve 3.5 lakh tribal students.
  • A National Data Governance Policy will be released to spur start-ups and academia to innovate and conduct research.
  • The University Grants Commission's (UGC) grant has been enhanced by Rs 459 crores (9.37 pc).
  • As compared to BE 2022-23, support for Central Universities has increased by 17.66%, Deemed Universities by 27%, IITs by 14%, and NITs by 10.5%.


  • An Agriculture Accelerator Fund will be established to enable young entrepreneurs to launch agribusinesses.
  • Agriculture will benefit from the development of digital public infrastructure.
  • Agriculture loan worth Rs 20 lakh crore is aimed for animal husbandry, dairy, and fisheries.
  • Over the following three years, one crore farmers will be helped to transition to natural farming.
  • 10,000 bio input resource centres will be established.
  • Fisheries: A sub-scheme under the PM Mastya Sampada Yojna with a budget of Rs 6,000 crore would be launched to support fishermen's activities.
  • To help India become a global centre for 'Shree Anna,' the Indian Institute of Millet Research in Hyderabad will be sponsored as a Centre of Excellence for sharing best practises, research, and technology on an international scale.
  • Computerization of 63,000 credit societies will cost Rs 2,516 crore.
  • Upper Badra project would receive Rs 5,300 crore in central Karnataka's drought-prone districts to offer sustainable micro-irrigation.
  • GOBARdhan (Galvanizing Organic Bio-Agro Resources Dhan) project will create 500 new 'waste to wealth' factories to promote circular economy with a total investment of Rs 10,000 crore.
  • A 5% compressed biogas obligation will be implemented for all firms marketing natural and biogas.

Tribal Welfare: 

  • The Pradhan Mantri Primitive Vulnerable Tribal Group (PMPVTGS) initiative has been started to ameliorate the socioeconomic conditions of PMPVTGS Tribals. 
  • The mission would provide Rs 15,000 crore over the next three years for safe housing, sanitation, drinking water, and power.


  • The Department of Space has been granted Rs 12,544 crore.
  • In-Space is allocated Rs 95 crore, up from Rs 21 crore in the Revised Estimate. A significant amount of the budget, Rs 53 crore, has been set aside for capital expenditure at INSPACe.
  • The Physical Research Laboratory has been allocated Rs 408.69 crore.

Sports receive a budget of Rs 3,397.32 crore, an increase of Rs 723.97 crore.

  • The Rs 3,397.32 crore sports budget allocation is the greatest in the country's history.
  • 'Khelo India' has been given a budget of Rs 1,045 crore.
  • For 2023-24, the Sports Authority of India will receive Rs 785.52 crore.
  • National Sports Federations would see an increase of Rs 325 crore.

PM Vishwa Karma Kaushal Samman: 

  • A package of aid for traditional craftsmen and crafters has been created, which would enable them to improve the quality, scale, and reach of their products while integrating into the MSME value chain.

The free meal programme will be extended through 2024:

  • The government is developing a scheme beginning January 1, 2023, to provide free food grain to all Antyodaya and priority households for a year under PM. Kalyan Garib Yojana Ann.

The seven priorities stated in the session “saptarishi” are as follows:

  • Inclusive development
  • Reaching the last mile
  • Infrastructure and investment
  • Unleashing the potential
  • Green growth
  • Youth power
  • Financial sector


Finally, the Union Budget of India is critical in influencing the country's economic and fiscal policy. Budget proposals, tax revisions, and sector allocations serve as indicators of the government's objectives and plans for the coming fiscal year.

The government's recent Union Budget for 2023 stressed the government's emphasis on infrastructure development, healthcare, education, and rural empowerment. The budget also aims to encourage self-sufficiency and inclusive growth, with a focus on digital transformation and job creation. While numerous stakeholders have expressed varied feelings about the budget, its implementation will determine its actual impact on the Indian economy and the common man.

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