Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday unveiled the first budget under the second term of Narendra Modi led NDA government.
Sitharaman, the first full-time women Finance Minister, made several key announcements. The FM announced Rs 100 lakh crore for infrastructure, as a whole, in the next 5 years.
Keeping humongous budget allocation for infrastructure in mind, let’s have a look at important takeaways from the budget speech on housing and infrastructure sectors.
Key Announcements For Housing And Infrastructure
Bridging Rural-Urban Divide: Finance Minister announced schemes such as ‘Bharatmala’, ‘Sagarmala’ and UDAN for bridging the rural and urban divide as well as improving transport infrastructure.
Rail & Metro Connectivity: The FM announced that 657 km of the metro rail network has become operational across the country while railway infrastructure will need Rs 50 lakh crore investment till 2030.
The Finance Minister stated that the Union government has approved rail and metro projects for 300 km across the country. She further said that private partnership will be encouraged to develop rail infrastructure. “Public-private partnership to be unleashed to develop rail infrastructure,” she said.
Road Connectivity: To further upgrade roads connecting villages to rural markets, the FM announced an upgrade of 1,25,000 km of road length over the next 5 years at a cost of Rs 802.5 billion, under phase 3 of Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana.
Affordable Housing: The FM announced an additional deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh on interest paid on loans for the purchase of house up to Rs 45 lakhs. The deductions will be applicable for loans borrowed upto 31 March 2020.
The FM stated that under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (urban), over 81 lakh houses with an investment of about Rs 4.83 lakh Cr have been sanctioned.
Sitharaman further stated that construction of about 47 lakh houses have started, of which 26 lakh houses have been completed and nearly 24 lakh houses have been delivered to beneficiaries.
Defecation Free India: The FM announced that under the Swachh Bharat mission, India will be Open Defecation Free by October 2nd, 2019.
Stating that, since October 2, 2014, 9.6 crore toilets have been constructed and over 5.6 lakh villages have become open defecation free, the FM proposed to expand the Swachh Bharat mission to undertake sustainable solid waste management in every village.