Growth and Employment
- As India gets back on track to achieve its goal of becoming a USD 5 trillion economy, the Budget 2022-2023 tries to put India on a high-growth trajectory.
- The macro-economic growth must also be people-centric. Around 90 million workers will be looking for gainful non-farm work opportunities between now and 2030. An additional 55 million women could enter the workforce by 2030. Only a return to rapid and sustained GDP expansion, fuelled by high productivity growth will enable the large-scale creation of gainful opportunities needed for these workers.
Pillars for rapid economic growth and employment generation:
- The key to achieving high growth rates lies in a technology-driven approach, application of advanced technology and fostering of innovation through structural reforms and focusing on sunrise sectors.
- The sunrise opportunities for India include – Artificial Intelligence; Geospatial Systems and Drones; Semiconductor and its ecosystem; Space Economy; Genomics and Pharmaceuticals; Green Energy; and Clean Mobility Systems.
Ease of doing business reforms:
- There is a need for reforms in Ease of Doing Business, start-ups, and industry promotion and competition. Furthering Ease of Doing Business reforms through trust-based governance will greatly enhance productivity and investment. This would require the following approaches.
- Light-touch regulation: These are simple, digitised, self-declaration processes that leverage technology tools.
- Facilitative proactive action: The government must not simply respond to market shifts but take lead and direct the market to the desired stage.
- Open-channel consultation: Establishing an open channel of communication between all stakeholders on various policy matters.
- Data-driven evidence-based policymaking: Bringing a systematic approach based on data collection and analysis, complemented with a scientific mindset to policymaking.
Access to credit:
- Improved access to credit can help. Hence initiatives like the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme and the revamped Credit Guarantee Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) are welcome in this direction.
- The availability of adequate quality infrastructure is a must for rapid and sustainable economic growth. The PM Gati Shakti Mission is a welcome initiative in this direction. The PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan will encompass the seven pillars of infrastructure for economic transformation, seamless multimodal connectivity and logistics efficiency. This will help raise productivity and accelerate economic growth and development. The focus will be on planning and financing through innovative ways, the use of technology, and speedier implementation.
Education and skilling:
- Providing adequate and quality education and skill to the available human resource is of utmost importance.
- Tele-education and digital education can provide a resilient mechanism for education delivery and lead to improved education outcomes. High-quality e-content can be developed and delivered over the internet and mobile phones, with a special focus on female education.
- Integration of vocational training in school and higher education will provide youth with hands-on experience, reduce on-job training time, and improve productivity.
- Digital universities and online higher education programs add to the nation’s high skilled workforce, accelerating the innovative drive of these youth.
- Incorporation of the National Skill Qualification Framework can enable lateral mobility in all sectors, increasing employment opportunities.
- Financial-sector reforms and streamlining fiscal resources can deliver USD 2.4 trillion in investment while boosting enterprises by lowering the cost of capital for enterprises by about 3.5 percentage points.
- Investments will need to rise to at least 37 percent of GDP from 33 percent pre-crisis, with a sharp uptick in private-sector investment.
- Measures like a “bad bank” for non-performing loans and reforms in directed bank lending could reduce capital costs.
- The government must promote the adoption of green bonds to finance sustainable development projects. Emphasis on blended finance in identified thematic areas will encourage private investments and improve industry confidence.
- The agriculture sector stands out from other sectors in the fact that it showed resilience even amid the COVID 19 pandemic.
- Currently, the agriculture and allied sector accounts for 18.8 percent of Gross Value Added (GVA) in the Indian economy. It has achieved a growth rate of 3.9 percent in 2021-22.
Budget provisions related to the agricultural sector:
- The current budget has allocated Rs 1,32,513.62 crore to the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, marking a 12.59 percent increase in the allocation vis-à-vis the actual expenditure recorded during the year 2020-21.
- The budget has announced substantial allocations for important schemes like Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bhima Yojana, PM- Kisan, Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana, Agriculture Infrastructure Fund and Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana.
Promotion of Nutri-Cereals:
- The current Budget has promised to provide support for post-harvest value addition, enhancing domestic consumption and facilitating brand and market development of the millet-based products nationally and internationally.
- This would help in generating incremental income and employment opportunities in rural areas. This is also an attempt to bring out crop diversification by advocating a gradual shift from the cultivation of water-intensive crops like sugarcane and paddy to cotton, horticulture, nutri-cereals, pulses and oilseeds.
Minimum Support Prices (MSP) for Agriculture:
- Pay outs of around Rs 2.37 lakh crore towards MSP has been directly payable to the farmers’ accounts. This would guarantee national food security and enhanced income in the hands of the farmers.
Technology Infusion in Agriculture:
- The Budget attempts to roll out integrated and feasible tech solutions to digitise agri-markets, rural markets and sub-markets, payment systems, workflows leading to subsidy disbursements to beneficiary farmers, etc.
- The government proposes to promote extensive use of ‘Kisan Drones’ for crop assessment, digitisation of land records, spraying of insecticides, pesticides and nutrients, etc.
- The budget announced the launching of a scheme on PPP mode to extend delivery of digital and high-tech services to farmers through private agri-tech players and agri-value chain stakeholders.
Promoting Agri-Tech Startups:
- The budget announced a National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) funded scheme to promote agri-tech startups focusing on diverse aspects of agriculture. NABARD will set up a blended capital fund under the co-investment model to financially support the agriculture start- ups and rural enterprises. The initiative would provide assistance for enhancing the effectiveness and efficiencies of agri-produce value chains.
- This initiative of the government would ensure higher penetration of technology and technical expertise and establish innovative, sustainable and profitable agriculture supply chain networks resulting in enhancing farm income, employment and wealth in rural areas.
Promotion of Natural Farming:
- The budget aims to promote chemical-free natural farming
- Currently, 4.09 lakh hectares have been covered under natural farming.
Digitisation of Agriculture Cooperatives:
- In order to ensure smooth, adequate, hassle-free and cost-effective credit flow to the farmers, the budget has allocated an amount to digitize 63,000 primary agricultural credit societies (PACs) in the country
- The focus of the Budget has been on timely and adequate availability of rural and agri-finance, access to other agri-inputs and services, increasing technological intervention, adequacy in insurance coverage and risk mitigation, marketability of products, improving agriculture value chains and supply chains by attracting investments into innovations in agriculture
Learning Recovery in School Education
Impact of the pandemic on the education sector
- Nationwide lockdowns, extended closure of schools, and migration of daily laborer’s considerably interrupted the learning process of children. The pandemic has had a significant impact on the education system affecting lakhs of schools and colleges across the country.
- The ASER 2021 while assessing the impact during the pandemic for the education sector in rural areas, have found mixed results. As per ASER, despite the pandemic, enrolment in the age cohort of 15-16 years continued to improve as the number of not enrolled children in this age group declined from 12.1 percent in 2018 to 6.6 percent in 2021. However, children in the age cohort 6-14 years who were ‘not currently enrolled in schools’ increased from 2.5 percent in 2018 to 4.6 percent in 2021.
Approach to mitigate the impact:
- A multi-pronged and comprehensive approach has been adopted to limit and reverse the impact of the pandemic on the education sector. The major initiatives include the following.
- Expansion of digital education through the PM e-VIDYA initiative. DIKSHA is the ‘One Nation, One digital education’ infrastructure for school education. This digital infrastructure has been utilized for creating Energized Textbooks and e-contents in 33 Indian languages including Indian Sign Language. 12 Swayam Prabha TV Channels under the ‘One class, One TV channel’– initiative with more than 7,000 programmes were also telecasted. Education programmes were also being broadcasted on iRadio.
- Identification, smooth admission process and continued education of migrant children.
- Guidelines for out-of-school children and mitigation of learning loss through student support and home learning.
- Continued education for Children with Special Needs.
- Student support on school reopening through bridge courses and teachers’ capacity building.
Budget provisions related to the education sector:
- Expansion of TV channels: The emphasis is on the access to quality education through TV channels with a particular focus on rural areas’ weaker sections. The One class-One TV channel programme of PM e-VIDYA will be expanded from 12 to 200 TV channels. This will enable all states to provide supplementary education in regional languages for classes 1-12.
- Focus on Vocational Education: The promotion of vocational courses to promote crucial critical thinking skills and to give space for creativity is a key priority of the Government of India. Under this, 750 virtual labs in science and mathematics, and 75 skilling e-labs for a simulated learning environment will be set up in 2022-23.
- Digital University: A digital university in different Indian languages will be established to provide access to students across the country for world-class quality universal education with a personalised learning experience at their doorsteps.
- Learning Enhancement Package for all students to combat the adverse effects of the pandemic will be provided at the beginning of the academic session of 2022-23.
- Teacher Resource Package: To continue with the hybrid mode of learning, tablets will be provided to the 25 lakh teachers at the primary level to enable them to use the resources and content on various digital portals and show them to the students.
Transforming Industrial Ecosystem
- Economic Survey 2021-22 states that India’s GDP growth during 2021-22 is projected to be 9.2 percent, following a contraction of 7.3 percent in 2020-21. This is the highest projection amongst the large economies.
- GDP growth is projected to be between 8.0 percent and 8.5 percent in 2022-23.
- India’s exports in 2021-22 are expected to grow by 16.5 percent and achieve levels higher than pre- pandemic levels.
- Gross Value Added of Industry is expected to grow by 11.8 percent in 201-22 recovering from the 7 percent contraction in 2020-21. As per Economic Survey 2021-22, most components of the Index of Industrial Production have recovered to the pre-pandemic levels.
Budget provisions related to the Industrial Ecosystem:
Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs):
- The Budget proposes to strengthen the effectiveness of at least two of the Aatma Nirbhar Bharat package announced in 2020, viz. Udyam portal and Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS).
- Udyam registration certificate helps MSMEs to avail benefits of Ministry of MSME’s schemes and those of Priority Sector Lending (PSI) of banks. The Budget has proposed to interlink the Udyam portal with the following:
- National Career Service
- e-shram which is a centralised database of unorganised workers seeded with Aadhaar
- ASEEM (Aatma Nirbhar Skilled Employee-Employer Mapping), which is an Artificial Intelligence-based portal that helps in finding sustainable livelihood opportunities.
- The budget has not only enhanced the coverage of ECLGS to Rs. 5 lakh crore, but its applicability has also been extended up to 31 March 2023 from 31 March 2022. Out of Rs. 5 lakh crore coverage, Rs. 50,000 crore has been exclusively earmarked for the hospitality and related enterprises which have been one of the most adversely hit sectors by the pandemic.
- Another Budget announcement is the credit augmentation to Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) to Rs. 2 lakh crore. This will lead to an enhanced number of loan accounts and employment opportunities.
- Further, the Budget has proposed the rolling out of the Raising and Accelerating MSME Performance (RAMP) programme over the next 5 years with an outlay of Rs 6,000 crore. The proposed programme aims to equip MSMEs adequately so that they can overcome the challenges imposed by the pandemic.
Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme:
- The Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme was launched in 2020 with the objective of boosting domestic manufacturing in sunrise and strategic sectors, improving cost competitiveness of domestically manufactured goods, enhancing domestic capacity and economies of scale, and attracting investment.
- PLI covers 14 sectors, of which the latest is the sector of drones and drone components. Building on the success of the PLI Scheme, this year’s Budget has proposed to launch a scheme for design-led manufacturing to build a strong ecosystem for 5G as a part of the PLI Scheme.
- The Budget has proposed to launch the Ease of Doing Business 2.0 where States will also be involved and integrated into the current system. Besides proposing amendments to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code to ensure efficient insolvency resolution, the Budget has envisaged the establishment of the Centre for Processing Accelerated Corporate Exit (C-PACE) to ease out the exit process for companies.
- In terms of tax concessions, it has been proposed to extend the period of incorporation of eligible start-ups, for availing tax incentives.
- The budget has proposed to replace the Special Economic Zones Act with a new legislation.
Strengthening Rural Economy
- Strengthening of rural economy occupies a special significance in the overall socio-economic development of a country like India where nearly two-thirds of the total population and more than 70 percent of workforce reside in rural areas.
- The major economic problems faced by the rural people are poverty, unemployment and inequality. The solution to these economic problems is of utmost importance to put a check on the rural-urban drift and for achieving growth with justice.
- Thus, ensuring balanced regional development with a focus on the rural economy will remain a top development agenda in India.
Budget provisions related to the rural economy:
- In the Union Budget 2022-23, liberal funds have been provided for generating income and employment in rural areas through substantial investment and increased public expenditure on the schemes and programmes formulated for this purpose like the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana – Gramin, Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana and National Rural Livelihoods Mission.
- PMAY-G has the objective to provide pucca houses with all basic amenities to all the eligible rural households by the year 2022, which now has been extended up to the year 2024.
- Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana aims to promote economic activities in rural India by providing all-weather road connectivity to eligible un-connected rural habitations.
- National Rural Livelihoods Mission aims at creating diversified and gainful self-employment for the rural poor through sustainable livelihood enhancement and improved access to financial services. The programme envisages covering of all the rural poor households to be organised in 70-75 lakh SHGs at the village and cluster level by 2024-25.
- The main focus has been on strengthening the rural economy by reviving agriculture and allied sectors in rural India. As a part of this substantial allocations have been made to major central sector schemes/projects under the Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare apart from the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) Yojana which envisages income support for the farmers.
- Another major aspect of the budget provision related to the rural economy involves providing social safety nets in the form of schemes like the National Social Assistance Programme.
- It is a welfare programme that comprises many sub-schemes aimed at providing public assistance to citizens in case of unemployment, old age, sickness and any form of disability major schemes under this programme include Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme, Indira Gandhi National Widow Pension Scheme, Indira Gandhi National Disability Pension Scheme, National Family Benefit Scheme and Annapurna Scheme.
- Improving infrastructure in rural areas for rapid growth and poverty alleviation and provision of basic services in rural areas has been targeted through programmes such as Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission.
- The government of India has accorded high priority to increase the productivity of degraded soil and improve real-time information on land through key schemes like Integrated Watershed Development Component of Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana and Digital India Land Records Modernisation Programme.
Accelerating Tech Transformation
Initiatives taken to deepen ICT technology in rural areas:
Universal Service Obligation Fund:
- Apart from the higher capital cost of providing telecom services in rural and remote areas, these areas also generate lower revenue due to lower population density, low income, and lack of commercial activity. Thus, normal market forces alone would not direct the telecom sector to adequately serve backward and rural areas. Hence targeted policies to provide Universal Access and Universal Service to ICT becomes necessary.
- In India, the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF), formed by an Act of Parliament, was established under the Indian Telegraph (Amendment) Act 2003 (further amended in 2006), to provide financial support for the provision of telecom services in commercially unviable rural and remote areas of the country. USOF is the pool of funds generated by 5 percent Universal Service Levy that is charged upon all the telecom fund operators on their Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR). This fund is deposited in the Consolidated Fund of India and is dispatched on the approval of the Indian Parliament.
- BharatNet, previously known as the National Optical Fiber Network envisages laying optical fibre in all villages including the remote areas. The proliferation of broadband in rural areas will bridge the rural-urban divide of digital access and accelerate the achievement of Digital India. The penetration and proliferation of broadband are also expected to increase direct and indirect employment and income generation.
- As of January 17, 2022, a total of 1,70,136 out of the 2,50,000 Gram Panchayats had been made ‘Service Ready’ for the BharaNet project in the country.
- BharatNet is the world’s largest rural broadband connectivity programme using optical fibre.
Related budget provisions:
- The new Budget takes another significant step towards technological enablement of the rural population by adding fresh elements to the Digital India vision.
- The Budget has proposed to allocate five percent of annual collections under the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF). This will promote R&D and commercialisation of technologies and solutions.
- A fund with blended capital, raised under the co-investment model, will be facilitated through NABARD. This is to finance start-ups for agriculture and rural enterprises, relevant for farm produce value chain. The activities for these startups will include, inter alia, support for FPOs, machinery for farmers on a rental basis at farm level, and technology including IT-based support.
- The government has plans in place to encourage start-ups in the agritech sector as well as those who make rural India their base by giving them tax exemptions and other monetary and policy benefits.
- A significant thing to observe in the budget is the emphasis on the use of Kisan Drones for various purposes in rural areas. The government is launching a ‘Drone Shakti’ initiative and will facilitate the use of drones as a service.
- Under the Vibrant Village programme, the government is going to prioritise the development of border villages and the scope of development is expected to extend to the provision and adoption of communication and digital technologies as well.
- Other important proposals and announcements related to the technology sector which will be relevant to rural India include the expansion of PM eVIDYA to 200 TV channels and the inclusion of all post offices in the core banking system.
- Information and communication technologies are being increasingly referred to as an integral part of the government’s approach, commitment and resolve towards holistic and sustainable rural development. Budget 2022-23 is a testimony to the fact.
Significance of infrastructure development:
- There are two types of infrastructures — physical and social. The development of physical infrastructure is argued to be crucial for rapid economic growth. Spending on physical infrastructure is also found to reduce transaction costs and other input costs, develop trade activities, facilitate the opening of new markets, raise productivity, and enhance employment opportunities which contribute to the economic growth of a nation. The development of social infrastructure, such as expenditure on education and health services, is crucial for the development of human resources in an economy, which is expected to contribute to long-run economic growth with enhanced skill and productivity.
- Public spending on infrastructure is crucial for a sustainable increase in the income and standard of living of the people of any country.
- Physical infrastructure, such as transportation, communication, power, and telephones, promote economic growth and create a favourable impact on economic growth both in the long-run and short-run and spending on infrastructure creates a multiplier effect on the creation of additional income in the economy. In the context of India, the estimated value of the capital expenditure multiplier is 2.45. This implies every one rupee spent as capital expenditure creates Rs 2.45 income in the economy.
- Infrastructure contributes to raising the quality of life by creating amenities, providing more goods for consumption (through transport and communication services).
- Public expenditure on infrastructure has been acknowledged as an important instrument in the development process of developing economies.
- The Economic Survey 2021-22 pointed out that in order to achieve a GDP of USD 5 trillion by 2024-25, India needs to spend about USD 1.4 trillion over these years on infrastructure.
Budget provisions related to infrastructure development:
- Among the four priorities identified by the budget, the development of physical infrastructure through PM Gati Shakti is one of them. It aims to provide multimodal connectivity to various economic zones and integrate the infrastructure linkages holistically for seamless movement of people, goods and services to improve logistics efficiency.
- With respect to roadways, the Union Budget 2022-2023 aims for the formulation of a Master Plan for expressways and completing 25,000 km national highways in 2022-23. Notably, the Union Budget 2022-2023 has allocated Rs 19,000 crores for PMGSY, which is 36 percent more than the budget allocation under Union Budget 2021-2022.
- The Union Budget 2022-23 has aimed to bring 2,000 km of the rail network under the indigenous world-class technology KAWACH. The Union Budget sets a goal to add 400 new-generation Vande Bharat trains with better efficiency in the next three years. Along with this, 100 PM Gati Shakti Cargo terminals are targeted to be developed during the next three years. The budget also aims to develop a ‘One Station-One Product’ model to leverage the local produce carried on the railway.
- Under the Regional Connectivity Scheme-UDAN, 153 RCS airports, including 12 water aerodromes and 36 Helipads, have been identified for the operation of RCS flights.
- The Union Budget 2022-2023 has rightfully emphasised the logistical sector and plans for four Multimodal Logistics parks through PPP to be awarded in 2022-23.
- The Union Budget has announced National Ropeways Development Plan as a sustainable alternative to conventional roads in difficult areas. The Budget also has announced the Parvatmala scheme for hilly areas.
- The Union Budget has announced a vibrant village program to develop infrastructure in villages that are adjacent to border areas, with the construction of village infrastructure, housing, tourist centres, road connectivity, provisioning of decentralised renewable energy, direct-to-home access for Doordarshan and educational channels, and support for livelihood generation.
- The Union Budget 2022-2023 has allocated an outlay of Rs 48,000 crore under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana to target the construction of 80 lakh homes to facilitate access to affordable housing.
- The budget also has proposed to cover 3.8 crore households in 2022-23 with piped water system under ‘Her Ghar, Nal Se Jal’ scheme.
- The Union Budget 2022-2023 has proposed to upgrade two lakh Anganwadis to Saksham Anganwadi in 2022-23.
- The Budget also has proposed to establish a ‘Digital University’ with world-class quality education. The Union Budget aims to set up 750 virtual labs in science and mathematics, and 75 skilling e-labs in 2022-23, as part of vocational education.
- The Union Budget 2022-23 has proposed bringing 100 percent of post offices under the core banking system, which would boost the financial inclusion of the country.
- It has proposed for rolling out of National Digital Health Ecosystem.
- To boost the online learning experience the budget has announced the ‘One class-One TV channel’ programme would be expanded to 200 TV channels.
Special Infrastructure Development Initiative for North East:
- The Union Budget 2022-2023 has announced a special infrastructure development initiative for the North-Eastern States. The new scheme Prime Minister’s Development Initiative for North-East (PM- DevINE) plans to fund and implement infrastructural projects in the spirit of PM Gati Shakti. The Initiative also plans to fund social infrastructure development projects and other projects as per the felt needs of the states.
- The National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) has been created to boost up investment in infrastructure. The Union Budget 2022-2023 has perceived the complementary role of private investment in infrastructure projects with public investment to play the major role.
- The outlay for capital expenditure in the Union Budget 2022-23 has increased to 7.50 lakh crore, which is more than 35.4 percent more than the Budget of 2021-22 and 2.2 times of the expenditure of 2019-20. This outlay in 2022-23 will be 2.9 percent of GDP.
- The ‘Scheme for Financial Assistance to States for Capital Investment’ has an increased allocation, and is now Rs. 1 lakh crore.
- The Union Budget 2022-2023 of India is a well-thought effort to revive the economy from the ill- effects of the pandemic, lay the foundation of the goal of USD 5 trillion economy, and pave the way for sustainable economic growth for the next 25 years through the development of infrastructure.
Animal Husbandry and Fisheries
Significance of the allied sectors:
- Animal husbandry, dairy farming, and fisheries play a pivotal role in the growth story of India due to their substantial contributions to the national economy.
- Dairy is the single largest agricultural commodity contributing five percent of the national economy and employing more than eight crore farmers directly.
- The fisheries sector supports the livelihood of over 28 million people in India, especially the marginalised and vulnerable communities. It contributes about 1.24 percent to the country’s GVA (Gross Value Added) and over 7.28 percent to the agricultural GVA. Currently, India is the second-largest fish producing country in the world accounting for 7.56 percent of global production.
- Dairying and its allied activities have become a very important secondary source of income for millions of rural families.
- National Livestock Mission aims for breed development in livestock; feed and fodder development; innovation and extension along with conservation of indigenous bovine breeds.
- National Animal Disease Control Programme is the largest ever vaccination programme carried out either for human or animal vaccination in the world. It aims to control and eventually eradicate the dreaded Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and Brucellosis by 2030.
- The special Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund worth Rs.15,000 crore aims to facilitate investments for the establishment of dairy and meat processing plants and animal feed plants.
Budget provisions related to the allied sectors:
- The Budget allocation for the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying has increased by 44 percent over the last year.
- Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojana (PMMSY), an umbrella scheme of the Department of Fisheries, and the National Livestock Mission have received increased allocations.
- The National Programme for Dairy Development, which got a boost in the present budget, aims to strengthen and create the necessary infrastructure for the production of quality milk and milk products. It will help the Indian dairy industry move from unorganised to organised status.
- The recent budget proposal for a reduction in Alternate Minimum Tax for cooperatives and reduction in the surcharge for cooperative societies will help enhance dairy farmers’ incomes across the country since most of our dairy fraternity represents the cooperative sector.
- The Budget proposes to reduce the duty on certain inputs required for shrimp aquaculture like larval seeds, artemia and shrimp broodstock so as to promote its exports. The budget also proposes to waive import duty on frozen krill, squid and mussels used as feed in shrimp hatcheries.
Inclusive Rural and Agriculture Prosperity
- Union Budget 2022-23 has laid thrust on four priorities: advancement and modernisation of infrastructure, inclusive development and welfare, boosting capital expenditure, and enabling growth through productivity enhancement.
- Union Budget 2022-23 has continued to provide thrust to inclusive development especially in rural areas through continued support to many social sector schemes and some new programmes.
Related budget provisions:
Promoting Village Development in Underdeveloped Regions:
- In India, many border villages and aspirational districts lag in the development indicators. The government has announced a Vibrant Villages Programme and an Aspirational Block Programme to address these concerns.
- Under the Aspirational Districts Programme, the budget has announced to focus now on such blocks which have continued to lag. This initiative will go a long way in providing all-around development of the backward pockets in the rural areas.
Nari and Yuva Shakti
- India has a double advantage of women and youth power.
- India is among the top nations with the youngest population in the world today at a median age of 28-29 years. At present, 55.8 percent of the Indian population is in the working-age group of 20-59 years — nearly half of them are women.
- The World Bank reports that India’s GDP growth rate would climb above 9 percent if women had an equitable share of jobs, and that India could boost its growth by 1.5 percentage points per year if just 50 percent of women could join the workforce.
Related budget provisions:
- The Budget 2022 aims to create enabling support structures for women and youth through a life cycle approach.
- PM POSHAN 2.0 is a step in addressing issues of pre-natal and early childhood development and supporting mothers. Mission POSHAN 2.0 is an Integrated Nutrition Support Programme. It seeks to address the challenges of malnutrition in children, adolescent girls, pregnant women and lactating mothers through a strategic shift in nutrition content and delivery and by the creation of a convergent ecosystem to develop and promote practices that nurture health, wellness and immunity.
- Mission Shakti, announced in the budget, envisages a unified citizen-centric life cycle support for women through integrated care, safety, protection, rehabilitation and empowerment through its two sub-schemes – ‘Sambal’ and ‘Samarthya’. While the “Sambal” sub-scheme is for the safety and security of women, the “Samarthya” sub-scheme is for the empowerment of women.
- The Union Budget 2022 aims to create 2 lakh SAKSHAM Anganwadis in the country. Saksham Anganwadis are new generation Anganwadis that have better infrastructure and audio-visual aids, powered by clean energy and providing an improved environment for early child development.
- The PM eVIDYA, One class-One TV channel programme will help solve the problem of access and language to quality education.
- The Budget 2022 places emphasis on promoting critical thinking and creativity especially in the domain of vocational education through proposals for virtual labs and skilling e-labs.
- Budget 2022 has taken the bold step of setting up a Digital University.
- Budget 2022 has taken a leap forward in this direction in the form of DESH-Stack e-portal. The DESH-Stack e-portal (Digital Ecosystem for Skilling and Livelihood) aims to empower citizens to skill, reskill or up-skill through online training. It will also provide API-based trusted skill credentials, payment and discovery layers to find relevant jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities.
Agripreneurship and its significance:
- The creation of sustainable livelihood and entrepreneurial avenues is a major focus area for the Indian economy in general and rural economy in particular.
- Entrepreneurship development, especially, in and around agriculture and allied activities, agro-based industries, food processing sectors, etc. can ensure sustainable livelihoods and create the transformation of subsistence agriculture into a diversified farming business along with an increase in income levels.
- Agro-entrepreneurship, food processing and value chain development will also encourage youth into agriculture.
Schemes and Programmes:
- Schemes and programmes to promote entrepreneurship in general and agri-enterprise development, in particular, include PM Formalisation of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Scheme (PM FME Scheme) by the Ministry of Food Processing Industry (MoFPI) which aims at providing financial, technical and business support for up-gradation of existing micro food processing enterprises.
- To promote agri-entrepreneurship among youths, Student READY (Rural Entrepreneurship Awareness Development Yojana) Programme is implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare to augment skill training and capacity development.
- Under the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana —Remunerative Approaches for Agriculture and Allied Sectors Rejuvenation (RKVY-RAFTAAR) efforts are being made to provide all necessary supports to start as well as scale-up agribusiness and agri-startups.
- Agri-Clinics and Agri-Business Centers Scheme aims to supplement efforts of public extension by providing extension and other services to farmers. It also aims at creating gainful self-employment opportunities for unemployed agricultural graduates, agricultural diploma holders, intermediate in agriculture, and biological science graduates with PG in agri-related courses.
- Persisting problems include lack of funding, marketing problems, lack of knowledge of IT, complying with various legal formalities, lack of training facilities and extension services, lack of regular mentoring and handholding, etc.
Related budget provisions:
- The Union Budget 2022-23 has made many significant provisions to encourage agri-startups and entrepreneurial activities in agriculture and allied activities.
- Emphasis has been accorded on digital infrastructure for infusion of agriculture technologies in public private partnership (PPP) modes.
- The use of Kisan Drones for crop assessments, land records, spraying of insecticides and micronutrients, etc will bring transformative changes in the agriculture sector.
- The push towards digitalisation of agriculture coupled with the focus on hi-tech services would enhance rural entrepreneurship and encourage youth to go back to the farmlands, boosting the farm income.
- The initiatives such as provisioning of funds through NABARD for agri-startups and rural enterprises will help in infusing capital in the budding ecosystem of value chain start-ups along with ensuring delivery of digital and hi-tech services to farmers and other stakeholders of agri value chain system
From India to her Villages – Localisation of SDGs with Local Self Government
Sustainable development goals:
- The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are universal goals and targets. They are integrated and indivisible, and balance the three dimensions of sustainable development economic, social and environmental.
- The journey of the 17 SDGs with 169 global targets, was committed to by 193 countries in September 2015, and it came into effect on 1 January 2016.
Localisation of SDGs with Local Self-Government:
- It is impossible to visualise the achievement of the global goals for all without the localisation of these goals for each and every Panchayat and people there. Localisation relates both to how local and sub-national governments can support the achievement of the SDGs through bottom-up action.
- While many flagship schemes of the Government of India such as the National Health Mission (NHM), Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM), Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM), Poshan Abhiyan, etc. specifically state in their guidelines that there must be village-level plans, involvement of Gram Sabhas, sharing of data, training for Elected Representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs), amongst others, that seek to involve the Local Self Government in the process, the ground reality is quite different.
- The way to achieve the SDGs for India, to leave no one behind and leave no village behind is to go down to the Village Panchayat, involve the people of villages fully. People at the grassroots must be active participants and decision-makers.
- The 5Ps for achieving Sustainable Development Goals – People, Partnership, Prosperity, Planet and Peace should be taken to sub-district levels, to blocks, to each Village Panchayat and it is best done with the Local Self Government.
- Panchayati Raj Institutions with 31 lakh elected representatives (over 14 lakh woman representatives) In the 2.56 lakh village panchayats, 6,626 Block Panchayats, 621 District Panchayats, are a huge force that can propel change in all of India’s villages.