Kochi: The leaders of industry chambers and other experts in Kerala have welcomed the decision of the union finance minister Piyush Goyal to hike the income tax exemption limit, direct income delivery of Rs 6,000 marginal farmers and a slew of other measures giving relief to various sections of the people.
“The highlight of the budget is the tax reliefs provided to the salaried class, which would greatly benefit the middle income group”, said V Venugopal President Co-chin Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The tax benefits for interest earned on bank deposits and home sales are also expected to benefit the middle class.
C.J. George managing director of the Geojit Financial Services said the interim budget presented by Finance Minister is an election budget by all means. “The budget makes everybody happy, although the revenue projections need to be watched very carefully in order to see control on fiscal deficit” he said.
Mr. George cautioned about the lack of focus on employment and capital investment. “At a time when the unemployment is reported to be at 45 year high and corporate sector investment is at 14-year low there has been widespread expectations for direct investment boosters in the budget for creating more job opportunities”, he said.
The focus on healthy India by building a distress free, functional and comprehensive healthcare and wellness system by 2030 is a positive highlight of the budget, said Dr. Azad Moopen chairman and managing director of Aster DM Healthcare. “We are hopeful that this will eventually res-ult in reducing the urb-an-rural gap in healthcare delivery”, he said.
Describing the budget as progressive M.G. George Muthoot, chairman, FICCI Kerala State Council said it addresses the current challenges of the economy and the future growth potential.
Rail coach factory, AIIMS excluded
Kerala has nothing much to cheer from the union budget presented by Finance Minister Piyush Goyal in terms of getting the nod from the union government for some the long standing demands of the state.
The much talked rail coach factory at Palakkad has failed to find any mention in the budget documents while the promise of an All India Institute of Medical Sciences in the state also remained a pipe-dream. The finance minister remained silent on both the projects while he mentioned about setting up a new AIIMS at Haryana.
The share of central taxes to the state moving up by `2,076.97 cr taking the total central tax share to the state to `21,115.14 cr is a gain for the state. The state is also expected to benefit from the allocation made to Indian Space Research Organisation, Cochin Shipyard Ltd, Cochin Port Trust and commodity boards. The ISRO has been given an allocation of `376 cr and Cochin Shipyard Ltd Rs 660 cr. The Cochin Port Trust is given `46.71 cr. The Coffee Board is given `200 cr, Rubber Board `170 cr, Tea Board `150 cr and Spices Board `100 cr. The Indian Institute of Space Sciences has been given an allocation of `80 cr.
The budget presented by Mr. Goyal has also not given much to cheer for those looking for a rapid development of state’s rail infra. The minister rema-ined silent on the demand for a third line in Ernaku-lam-Shornur stretch. The demand for terminal project at Nemam near Thiruvananthapuram also failed to get any mention in the budget....