রাজ-সমাজ-অর্থ + নীতি

BUDGET 2022-23 AND ATMANIRBHAR NOTHEAST INDIA

 

Prof. Nikhil Bhushan Dey

Former Dean, MG School of Economics and Commerce, Assam University Silchar

26 February 2022

On 12th May 2020, at the beginning of Pandemic COVID-19, our Honourable Prime Minister Narendra Modijji gave a clarion call to the Nation for "ATMANIRHAR BHARAT ABHIYAAN" to make India Self reliant...

Nikhil Bhushan Dey_edited.jpg

On 12th May 2020, at the beginning of Pandemic COVID-19, our Honourable Prime Minister Narendra Modiji gave a clarion call to the Nation for "ATMANIRHAR BHARAT ABHIYAAN" to make India Self reliant. To achieve the objective of self reliant India he announced a special economic package of INR 20 lakh crores equivalent to 10% of the India’s GDP to fight against the pandemic. He also outlined five pillars of ATMANIRHAR BHARAT-

  • Economy-quantum jump and not incremental,

  • Infrastructure-representing modern India,

  • Technology driven Systems ,

  • Vibrant Demography of largest democracy and

  • Full utilization of the power of Demand and Supply,  

 

-an ambitious plan for a modern India. A challenge converted into opportunity.

 

On the next day the Finance Minister, announced various schemes under the ATMANIRHAR BHARAT Abhiyaan to act as stimulus to business including MSMEs, poor including farmers, agriculture, new horizons of growth and Government reforms and enablers. In conformity with goal of achieving self reliance in every sphere of Indians and  the our motherland Bharatbarsha, the Budget 2022-23 also made huge allocations and emphasis on development of Farmers, MSMEs, infrastructure, education, health etc. It is important to note that India is celebrating its 75 years of Independence and Azadi ka Amrit Mahostav is being celebrated. India’s position in the world economic scenario is also very high and 5th rank in terms of GDP(nominal) (2020).

To give a boost to Indian economy at a high speed PM Gati Shakti Master Plan was announced by the Honorable Prime Minister on 75th Independence Day amounting to INR 100 lakh crore for developing holistic infrastructure for the country. Budget 2022-23 placed by Honourable Finance Minister is a landmark document at this juncture.

 

Amid the Pandemic, India’s GDP growth is estimated at 9.2 % in 2022-2023 which is the highest among the large economies of the world. This indicates strong fundamentals, efficient governance and high level of confidence of the Government of India. The PM’s Gati Shakti driven by seven engines of growth- road, railways, airport, port, mass transport, waterways and logistic infrastructure were given momentum by the Budget. Moreover, education and health constitutes important social sector investments and higher allocation of 18 % increase over the previous budget in the education sector along with opening of digital university are some of the highlights of the Budget.

 

All the benefits of higher allocation and emphasis of infrastructure development will be available to the entire country including North East India. The Union Budget for financial year 2022-23, presented by Finance Minister will lead to the doubling of farmers' income and benefit the medium, micro and small entreprises (MSMEs), Prime Minister Narendra Modi said. The fiscal road map unveiled by F M will benefit every sector of the economy, "with a special focus on agriculture", the prime minister claimed. The announcement of "over Rs 2.25 lakh crore MSP (minimum support price)" is aimed at benefitting the farmers as the amount is "being directly transferred" to them, he said. This "budget will double farmers' income," news agency ANI further quoted him as saying. "For MSMEs, credit guarantee and many new schemes have been announced," Modi noted. 

 

Coming to the North Eastern States, in the pre-budget parliament session, President Ram Nath Kovind stated that the government is dedicated to providing better infrastructure and connectivity in the North-Eastern states. The states slated to benefit include Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Sikkim, Nagaland, and Tripura. President Kovind also appreciated the government's actions concerning the country's northeast region. He said, "Rail and air connectivity are no longer a dream for the people of the Northeast; they are now able to experience them. It is a matter of pride for the country that all the capitals of the North-eastern states are now being brought on the railway map." (www.investindia.gov.in)

Continuing the Government’s special emphasis towards the North East Region, the Finance Minister announced to launch a new scheme with an initial allocation of INR 1,500 crore for development initiatives in the Northeast. The new reforms "will enable livelihood activities of youth and women" in the Northeast. The new scheme, the PM's Development Initiative for Northeast (PM-DevINE), will be executed through the North Eastern Council. It will finance infrastructure in the spirit of PM Gati Shakti and social developmental projects established on the felt needs of the Northeast. This will encourage livelihood activities for youth and women, filling the voids in different sectors. The scheme is however, not a replacement for existing central or state schemes. While the central ministries may also pose their candidate projects, priority will be given to those posed by the states. Individual States will be given priority in selecting their projects itself is a very big commitment in respect to the Federal Structure of India. Some specific allocation under the scheme are:

  • Establishment of Dedicated Services for the Management of Paediatric and Adult Haemotolymphoid Cancers in North East India, Guwahati (Multi-State) – Rs 129 crore

  • NECTAR Livelihood Improvement Project (Multi-State) – Rs 67 crore

  • Promoting Scientific Organic Agriculture in North East Indian (Multi-State) – Rs 45 core

  • Construction of Aizawl By-pass on Western Side – Rs 500 crore

  • Gap funding for Passenger Ropeway system for Pelling to Sanga-Choeling in West Sikkim – Rs 64 crore

  • Gap funding for Eco-friendly Ropeway (Cable Car) from Dhapper to Bhaleydhunga in South Sikkim – Rs 58 crore

  • Pilot Project for Construction of Bamboo Link Road at different locations in Various Districts in the State of Mizoram – Rs 100 crore .(source;www.pib.gov.in)

 

It must be admitted that The Narendra Modi Government since 2014 is giving special emphasis on completing the earlier incomplete projects and starting new development projects at a much faster speed and the connectivity and infrastructural problems of the north east has been minimized to a large extent. For example the BG rail connectivity of South Assam, Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram. North East India has to become equally equipped in participating in entrepreneurship development, e-commerce, farming and other allied activities along with the rest of India. North East India is getting all the benefits of Atmanirbhar Bharat, Vocal for Local, Start up India, Make in India, Digital India and e-governance initiatives and Budget 2022-23 is very much positive in terms of making Atmanirbhar Bharat and also Atmanirbhar North East India.