Experts say that some more measures were needed to bring the lagging economy back on track. The opportunity for fiscal measures to improve the economy was also lost. The surprising thing is that the allocation of several major ministries including the Ministry of Agriculture has been cut.
The budget for fiscal 2021-22 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharan is being called the budget of growth, in which special emphasis has been laid on infrastructure development. But the experts of economic matters are surprised to see the specifics of this budget. The allocation of several major ministries including the Ministry of Agriculture has been cut.
Experts say that some more measures were needed to bring the lagging economy back on track. The opportunity for fiscal measures to improve the economy was also lost.
There were high expectations from this budget. The economy was in a state of lethargy for the last 2 years. Even before the epidemic, the annual GDP growth rate had hit a decade low of 4 per cent. Everywhere there was a period of trouble, people’s wages were cut, jobs were lost, economic activities declined, most of the workers in the unorganized sector were affected.
Therefore, it was expected from the budget of this time that the path of fast improvement will be prepared. The fiscal deficit is really the number, it matters more what are the spending priorities of the government? In an article in the Indian Express, Himanshu Mishra, a financial expert, writes that this is a visionless budget.
According to him, the government had given a relief package of about Rs 30 lakh crore last year. The government increased food subsidies, sent more money to Jan Dhan accounts and spent more money for MNREGA. But the government did not mobilize any resources for this nor did it increase the fiscal deficit as the government cut the expenses and budget required for it like agriculture (Rs 18,000 crore), education (Rs 14,000 crore) and social welfare (14,000 crore) Rupees). The truth is that even after the announcement of several mini budgets, the actual expenditure which has increased is less than the increase in the first normal years.
Truth of health’s mega budget
The government has garnered a lot of accolades by announcing a huge budget of Rs 2.23 lakh crore for health, but its truth is also surprising.
The health budget also includes welfare schemes like drinking water, sanitation and nutrition. There is also a cost of vaccination of Rs 35 thousand crore. The truth is that only Rs 74,602 crore has been given to the Ministry of Health, which is much less than the revised estimate of Rs 82,445 crore for the current year.
Budget of Ministry of Agriculture reduced
Not only this, when the peasant movement is at its peak in the country. There is talk of farmers everywhere, in which case the government has cut the budget of the Ministry of Agriculture. In the budget of 2021-22, the allocation of the Ministry of Agriculture has been reduced by Rs 11,000 crore as compared to the current year. In the budget of 2021-22, an allocation of about 1.31 lakh crore has been made for this ministry, while in the current year i.e. 2020-21, an allocation of about 1.42 lakh crore was made.
PM Kisan fund allocation reduced
Not only this, the allocation of PM Kisan Fund has also been reduced. In the budget of 2021-22, 65000 crore rupees have been allocated for PM Kisan Nidhi, whereas in the budget of 2020-21, 75,000 crore rupees were allocated for it.
Similarly, in the budget of the Ministry of Rural Development, a drastic reduction of 52 per cent i.e. about Rs 66,000 crore has been made against the revised estimate of the current year. For example, the budget for MNREGA has been given only Rs 73,000 crore, while in March, an increase of 11 per cent has been announced in the wages of those working under it.
Similarly, for the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, in the budget of 2021-22, only Rs 4,500 crore was allocated and there is a huge decline of 23 percent. Similarly, the budget of Ministry of Women and Child Development has been cut by 18 percent, in the budget of Ministry of Education, about 6 percent.