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Budget 2015 is over, but did the Government fulfill the promises of Budget 2014?

What is a Budget? It is a set of announcements which the Government makes, and proposes to implement in the next one year. While we make a huge hue and cry over these announcements, very few people actually see if these promises were actually implemented, and if so, did the yield the desired results.

 took us through the latest Budget. We now take a look at some of the key declarations from Budget 2014, and see if the Government fulfilled its commitments. We have only included those proposals which can be realistically achieved in a year. Certain ideas like “Smart Cities” may take even a decade to fully materialise given the enormous work needed, hence they have been omitted.

PromiseStatus
Solution to GST DeadlockAchieved
FDI in DefenceAchieved
FDI in ConstructionAchieved
Integrated eBiz platformAchieved
Financial Inclusion Mission for all householdsAchieved
Providing Stable Taxation RegimeAchieved
FDI in InsuranceNot achieved
Impasse in Coal SectorPartially Achieved
Overhauling the subsidy regimePartially Achieved

A. 20 MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENTS : 9 Achieved, 9 Partially Achieved/Work in Progress, 2 Not Achieved

1. Expenditure Management Commission 

Status: Partially Achieved – In August 2014, the commission was set up, headed by former RBI governor Bimal Jalan. It was scheduled to give its Interim report before Budget 2015, and it did submit the same in January 2015. It will be interesting to see what inputs Jaitley gets from this report and how he implements the same.

2.  Overhauling the subsidy regime, including food and petroleum subsidies, and making it more targeted

Status: Partially Achieved – Modified Direct Benefit Transfer to LPG consumers called Pahal was launched in 54 districts on 15.11.2014. It has been launched in the remaining districts of the country from 1.1.2015.

3.  Solution to GST Deadlock

Status: Achieved – By negotiating with states and by accepting their demands, the Central Government came to a consensus on the GST bill and it was finally tabled before the parliament in December 2014. The promise of ironing out differences has been achieved, and now the economy is waiting for the roll-out of the GST Act as scheduled.

4. Providing Stable Taxation Regime:

Status: Achieved – High Level Committee has been constituted to scrutinize all fresh cases arising out of the retrospective amendments of 2012. Also, now notified Resident applicants can apply for “Advance Ruling” on tax issues, to avoid litigations.

5. FDI in Defence

Status: Achieved – In line with the “Make-In-India” focus, In August 2014, Government notified the increase in FDI cap for Defence upto 49% through approval route.

6. FDI in Insurance

Status: Not achieved The government has  promulgated an Ordinance to increase FDI to 49%, but has failed to get it ratified in the Rajya Sabha until now.

7. FDI in Construction

Status: Achieved – In December 2014, The Government announced changes in the norms for FDI in Construction,  in an effort to attract more money into the country to build new hotels, housing and townships.

8. e-VISA

Status: Achieved – Tourist Visa on Arrival enabled with Electronic Travel Authorization has been extended to citizens of 43 countries in the first phase on 9 designated airports from 27.11.2014.

9. Decision on unclaimed amounts with PPF etc

Status: Not Achieved- A Committee has been constituted, which was supposed to give its report by December 2014 but till now no report has come. It has held two meetings on 26.9.2014 and 29.12.2014.

10. Finance to 5 lakh landless farmers

Status: Partially Achieved- In November 2014, RBI issued detailed guidelines to banks, to facilitate loans to landless farmers. A State wise target for financing 5 lakh Joint Farming Groups through Joint Liability Group mode financing has been communicated. Whether 5,00,000 such farmers eventually availed this facility is not known, but the set-up for the same was definitely put in place.

11. Integrated eBiz platform

Status: Achieved – On 19th February, the “eBiz Portal” was launched by the Government with integration of the 13 priority services. Read more here.

12. Rs 10000 crore fund for startups.

Status: Partially Achieved- The fund has been established, scheme has been formulated and RBI’s comments have been received. The matter with regard to the source of investment is under consideration

13. 8500 Km National Highway to be constructed during current Financial Year (Upto March 2015)

Status: Partially Achieved- Till December, 2014, 2475 km. highway has been constructed. It doesnt seem likely that the Government will achieve its target

14. Impasse in Coal Sector to be resolved

Status: Partially Achieved- The Coal Mines (Special provisions) Ordinance, 2014 has been promulgated. E-auction of the coal blocks has been initiated.

15. Financial Inclusion Mission for all households in the country 

Status: Achieved – “Pradhan Mantri Jan-DhanYojana was launched on 28.08.2014.  As per Survey result, out of 2105.93 lakh households, 2105.52 lakh households have been covered.

16.  Framework for licensing small banks and other differentiated banks

Status: Achieved – The final guidelines on licensing of Small Finance Banks in the private sector and Payments Banks have been placed by RBI on its website on 27th November, 2014. Applications for setting up such banks were invited by 16th January, 2015.

17.  Detailed Project Reports on River Linking

Status: Partially Achieved- 16 Feasibility Reports have been completed. Rs 60 crore has been allocated in the current financial year 2014-15 for the work of preparation of the DPR for inter linking of river under IWRSD Component of the Plan scheme namely River basin Management.

18. Power & Water Reforms for Delhi

Status: Achieved –  

Power reforms: Scheme approved.  Rs 200 crore released to Govt. of NCT of Delhi.

Water reforms: The SFC in its meeting held on 16.12.2014, approved for Rs 450 crore and Rs 50 crore for Renuka dam. Payment of Rs 270 crore was released to Govt. of NCT Delhi on 22.12.2014.

19. Swacch Bharat Abhiyan

Status: Partially Achieved- The Scheme has been launched on 2.10.2014. Guidelines have been issued on 28.12.2014.

20. Review of definition of MSME

Status: Partially Achieved- The draft Amendment Bill to change the definition of MSME has been circulated to all the concerned Ministries/ Departments, State Governments and other stakeholders for comments.

 

 

B. MAJOR SCHEMES:  7 Achieved, 2 Partially Achieved/Work in Progress, 1 Not Achieved

1. National multi-scale programme ‘Skill India’

Status: Not Achieved- Although a new Ministry i.e. Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship has been created, the programme is still being worked out.

2. Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana to augment power supply in rural areas

Status: Partially Achieved- The Scheme has been approved by Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 20.11.2014.

3. Varishtha Pension Bima Yojana

Status: Achieved – Varishtha Pension Bima Yojana was launched on 14.8.2014.

4. Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao Yojana

Status: Achieved – The Scheme was launched on 22.1.2015.

5. Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana

Status: Achieved – Joint detailed Plan/Guidelines were formulated and issued to all State Governments on 31.7.2014

6. Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya New Teachers Training Programme

Status: Achieved – Launched on 25.12.2014

7. School Assessment Programme

Status: Achieved – Has been approved and is being rolled out.

8.  “One Rank One Pension” 

Status: Partially Achieved- A working Group  suggested some possible options for implementation of the scheme. The modalities are under consideration.

9. Young Leaders Programme  to promote leadership skills

Status: Achieved – A new Central Sector Scheme namely, ‘National Youth Leaders Programme (NYLP)’ was launched in December 2014.

10. Interest Subvention Scheme for Short Term Crop Loans

Status: Achieved – Cabinet has approved the proposal on 10.12.2014. Guidelines have been issued on 18.12.2014.

 

(Most of the above information is available here in the Government of India’s Action taken Report)

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