HIGHLIGHTS OF THE BUDGET FOR 2015-16

* Personal income tax rates unchanged

* Universal social security system for all Indians, especially poor and disadvantaged sections

* Wealth Tax to be abolished and additional two percent tax on super rich to yield Rs.9,000 crore annually

* GDP growth at 7.4 percent in 2014-15 and at 8-8.5 percent in 2015-16; double-digit growth feasible

* Non-Plan expenditure in 2015-16 estimated at Rs.1,312,200 crore; Plan expenditure estimated at Rs.465,277 crore

* Tax collection in 2015-16 estimated at Rs.1,449,490 crore

* Adequate provision for defence with Rs.246,727 crore earmarked for 2015-16

* Investment on infrastructure to go up by Rs.70,000 crore in 2015-16 over 2014-15

* Education sector allocated Rs.68,968 crore; rural development gets Rs.79,526 crore

* Government to soon launch National Skills Mission

* Corporate tax to be reduced to 25 percent from 30 percent in four years

* Comprehensive new law to be brought against black money

* Rigorous imprisonment of up to 10 years for concealing income

* Prevention of Money Laundering Act to be amended to provide for forfeiture of property in India if the one abroad cannot be attached

* Forwards Markets Commission to be Merged with Sebi

* Tax regime to be rationalised

* Applicability of General Avoidance Rules (GAR) to be deferred by two years in view of problems faced in its
implementation

* New structure to be put in place in banking sector for seamless integration of data

* Good progress in DMIC corridor and other infra-projects. Rs.1,200 crore earmarked and additional funds if pace of work picks up on ongoing projects

* Procurement law to be drawn up to ensure transparency and remove corruption

* In line with ‘Act East Policy’, steps to catalyse investment in this sector through a project development company to oversee investments in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam

* Tourism has increased after Visa on Arrival introduced for 43 countries. This facility to be increased to 150 countries in different stages

* Public Debt Management Agency to be created to strengthen the bond market

* Gold Monetisation Scheme to be introduced; sovereign gold bonds to be introduced; working on developing Indian
gold coin with Ashok Chakra on face

* Vision of making India cashless society

* Foreign Investment in alternative investment funds to be permitted

* Make India investment-destination by streamlining permission procedures

* Five ultra-mega power projects each of 4,000 MW to be set up; Second unit of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Station will be commissioned in 2015-16

* Integrated education and livelihood scheme to be launched

* National investment and infrastructure fund to be launched with corpus of Rs.20,000 crore to generate more funds

* Main challenges: increasing agricultural production; increasing investment in infrastructure; with manufacturing declining, Make in India will create jobs; cooperative federalism

* Agriculture credit targetted at Rs.8.5 lakh crore

* Rural jobs scheme to get Rs.34,699 crore; Allocation to be enhanced by Rs.5,000 crore if additional funds
available; Every poor to get a job * Need well-targeted system for s ubsidies.

* Two more gamechanging reforms: Goods and Services Tax, JAM trinity (Jan DhanYojna, Aadhar, Mobile number) to
ensure transparency