GUWAHATI: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharam on Feb 1, Saturday tabled the Union Budget for 2020-2021. This Budget session has seen some important schemes for the North East being announced by the Finance Minister.
Some key highlights are as follows:
5 archaeological sites including Shivsagar in Assam will be developed as iconic sites with on-site museums: Sivasagar, an abode of historical monuments. Sivasagar, once the capital of the Ahom rulers, has over 500 historical sites, including the famous Rangghar, several dols like the Shiva dol, huge tanks like the Shivsagar in the heart of the town, Karengghar and the famous burial ground at Charaideo (currently under newly-declared Charaideo district). Sivasagar Divas is observed on July 1.
National Gas Grid to be expanded from 16,200 km to 27,000 km: On January 8, Cabinet approved Rs 5,559 crore capital grant to Indradhanush Gas Grid Limited (IGGL) for setting up of North-East Natural Gas and Pipeline Grid. The project apart from developing an industrial climate in the region will generate employment and contribute towards economic growth. Expansion of the North-East Natural Gas grid though IGGL will further increase the share of clean fuels in India’s energy basket other than being in line with PM Modi’s vision of ‘Purvodaya-Rise of the East.’ The VGF to IGGL will help in providing uninterrupted supply of natural gas to the people of 8 states of North-East region and help develop an industrial climate without impacting the environment. It will also boost job opportunities and further spur economic growth in the region, say officials.
Krishi UDAN for improving the value realization in North East and tribal districts: Ministry of Civil Aviation to launch Krishi Udan on international and national routes. This will help in improving value realisation of farm & agricultural products, especially in the north-east and tribal districts.
Major tax relief for individuals:
Income between Rs. 5-7.5 lakh – Tax rate 10%
Income between Rs. 7.5-10 lakh – Tax rate 15%
Income between Rs 10-12.5 lakh – Tax rate brought down to 20% from 30%