Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday called the Budget 2018 farmer friendly, common-man friendly, business friendly and development friendly. Addressing the media after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presented the last full Budget of the NDA government, Modi said it would hasten India’s progress.
“Desh ki neev mazboot karne wala budget hai, farmer friendly, common-man friendly, business-friendly aur development friendly hai,” PM Modi said. The PM also said the Budget would add to ‘ease of living’ and ‘ease of doing business’. Last year, India jumped 30 places and ranked 100 in the World Bank ‘ease of doing business’ report.
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A slew of measures for the agriculture and rural sectors, a new health insurance scheme for the poor and some relief in income tax for the salaried class and senior citizens, were announced by the Finance Minister. Claiming that the “progressive” Budget would help strengthen his ‘New India’ vision, Modi said economic growth would also accelerate.
“The budget will help strengthen ‘New India’ vision. It is focused on all sectors and will accelerate economic growth,” the PM said. The decision to double minimum support price (MSP) for Kharif crop production came in for special praise from Modi. “I congratulate the Finance Minister for the decision regarding Minimum Support Price. I am sure it will help the farmers tremendously,” Modi said while adding that Dalits and tribal communities too stand to gain from the Budget, which will create new opportunities for rural India.
Discussing various schemes of his government, including the construction of toilets, smart city project and initiatives in power and health, the PM emphasised that the Budget devoted attention to all sectors, ranging from agriculture to infrastructure. “From food processing to fibre optics, roads to shipping, youth to senior citizen, rural India to Ayushmaan Bharat, Digital India to Start Up India, this budget strengthens hopes and aspirations of crores of Indians,” the PM said.