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Interim Budget 2024, Highlight, Feature and Focus Sector

Interim Budget 2024: Nirmala Sitharaman, the Finance Minister, introduced the Union Budget 2024 in Parliament. It’s an interim budget as it arrived just before the Lok Sabha Elections. This marks her sixth Union Budget. The complete budget will be put forward by the new government post-elections. The interim budget, essentially a short-term financial strategy, requests Parliament’s approval for an advance grant to cover the government’s essential expenses for the first four months of the upcoming financial year.

Interim Budget 2024

On February 1st, 2024, India presented an interim budget, not a full budget. This means it’s a temporary financial plan covering only a few months until the new government takes office after the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. The full budget with detailed allocations and proposals will be presented in July by the newly elected government.

Finance Budget 2024 Highlights

  • The Budget Session of Parliament started on January 31 with President Droupadi Murmu addressing a joint sitting.
  • President Murmu expressed hope for productive discussions in the new Parliament building and highlighted the Centre’s achievements, noting that nearly 25 crore people have risen out of poverty during her government’s 10-year term.
  • It is scheduled to end on February 1, the session will see Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presenting the interim budget.
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  • Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi outlined the session’s main agenda items, including the President’s Address, interim budget presentation, and the debate on the Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address.
  • During the inaugural session in the new Parliament building, Prime Minister Narendra Modi emphasized the Parliament’s approval of the Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam. This decision reflects the country’s acknowledgement of the strength, bravery, and resolute determination of women power on January 26.
  • As the budget session progresses under President Droupadi Murmu’s guidance and with Nirmala Sitharaman presenting the interim budget, the proceedings are seen as a tribute to Nari Shakti.

Budget 2024 Live Updates

  • The estimated gross borrowing for FY25 stands at ₹14.13 trillion, marking a reduction from FY24 levels.
  • Research has driven the growth of indigenous oilseeds such as mustard, groundnut, and sesame, aiming for self-sufficiency in India. Presently, India imports about 60% of its cooking oil, amounting to over ₹1.5 trillion annually.
  • The Finance Minister has set an aggressive fiscal consolidation target, announcing an FY25 fiscal deficit target of 5.1%, lower than the expected 5.3%. In FY24, the fiscal deficit target of 5.8% was achieved due to improved revenue mobilization compared to the targeted 5.9%.
  • A scheme has been introduced for middle-class housing, enabling those in rented houses, slums, and unauthorized colonies to purchase or construct their own homes.
  • Additional medical colleges will be established utilizing existing infrastructure.
  • Healthcare coverage under the Ayushman Bharat scheme will be extended to all Anganwadi workers and helpers.
  • Efforts to increase farmers’ income will be intensified.
  • The government will encourage private investment in post-harvest activities.
  • Finance Minister Sitharaman has declared the withdrawal of outstanding disputed tax demands, benefiting 1 crore taxpayers.
  • In the interim Budget 2024, the Finance Minister decided to maintain unchanged tax rates, including import duties, disappointing taxpayers. However, certain benefits for startups and tax exemptions for specific IFSC units expiring in March will be extended until March 2025.

Budget 2024 Date

The Union Budget of India for the financial year 2024-25, also known as Budget 2024, was presented on February 1, 2024, by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman at 11 am in the new Parliament building. However, it is important to note that this was an interim budget, meaning it was a temporary financial plan covering only the first few months of the fiscal year until the new government took office after the Lok Sabha elections.

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Interim Budget 2024 Expectation

  1. Limited scope: An interim budget typically focuses on essential expenditures and avoids major policy changes. So, don’t expect any groundbreaking announcements or drastic shifts in direction.
  2. Maintaining stability: The primary objective is to ensure smooth financial operations until the new government takes over. Expect allocations for essential services, ongoing programs, and interest payments.
  3. Populist measures: Since elections are around the corner, the government might announce some crowd-pleasing measures like tax breaks for specific groups or increased spending on popular schemes.
  4. Fiscal consolidation: With an eye on managing the fiscal deficit, the government might announce some austerity measures or limited increases in spending.

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Who is presenting the Union Budget 2024?

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is presenting the Union Budget 2024 in Parliament on February 1, 2024.

What is new in budget 2024?

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman while presenting Interim Budget 2024 on 1 February 2024, kept the tax slab rates unchanged for both new and old income tax regimes. When it comes to Budget, the only thing that the salaried class looks forward to is the income tax rebate.

What is interim budget and full budget?

The annual budget covers all aspects of government finances, including revenue generation, expenditure allocations, and policy announcements. In contrast, the interim budget focusses primarily on maintaining essential spending on ongoing schemes and critical public services until the new government takes charge.3

What is Union Budget 2024?

The Union budget 2024 is an interim budget because Lok Sabha elections are due early next year. The full budget for fiscal year 2025 presented on 1 February 2024 after the formation of a new government by Lok Sabha elections.

Why is the Union Budget 2024 considered an interim budget?

The Union Budget 2024 is considered an interim budget as it precedes the Lok Sabha Elections. It serves as a short-term financial plan until a new government is formed.

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