This year’s Union Budget 2023 presents a vision for the “Amrit Kaal Blueprint” for an empowered and inclusive economy. Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman listed top seven priorities for this Union Budget.
Here are the seven priorities for this year’s budget, that complement one another and serve as the ‘Saptarishi’ guiding us through the Amrit Kaal –
- Inclusive Development
- Reaching the Last Mile
- Investment and Infrastructure
- Unleashing the Potential
- Green Growth
- Youth Power
- Financial Sector
Union Budget 2023–24 highlights – Skill development, work-integrated education, and job creation
- Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) 4.0 will be introduced to train lakhs of youths in new age courses for Industry 4.0, including coding, AI, robotics, mechatronics, IOT, 3D printing, drones, and soft skills.
- 30 Skill India International Centers will be established in various states to prepare youth for opportunities internationally.
- States will be encouraged to establish a Unity Mall for the promotion and sale of their ODOPs (One District, One Product), GI products, and handicrafts.
- The Vibrant Villages Program would facilitate the development of tourism infrastructure and amenities in border villages.
- To enable inclusive farmer-centric solutions and support for the expansion of the agri-tech industry and start-ups, digital public infrastructure for agriculture will be developed as an open source, open standard, and interoperable public good.
- For domestic and foreign tourists, 50 destinations will be selected and developed as a comprehensive package.
Innovative pedagogy, curriculum change, ongoing professional development, dipstick surveys, and the use of ICT, according to Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman will reimagine the way that teachers are trained. “The District Institutes of Education and Training would be developed into vibrant institutes for this purpose.”
- Enhanced education expenditure: 2.9% of GDP in FY23
- Revamped teacher’s training through District Institutes of Education and Training
- Setting up the National Digital Library for children and youth
- Setting up physical libraries at Panchayat and ward levels
National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS)
Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman announced that Direct Benefit Transfer under a pan-India National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme will be implemented to offer stipend support to 47 lakh youth in three years.
New Nursing Colleges
The Finance Minister announced the establishment of 157 new nursing colleges in line with the 157 medical colleges already in place, founded in 2014. This announcement was made following the goals of India@100 and Amrit Kaal.
Youth Power – National Education Policy 2020
Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman, Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs mentioned that to empower our youth and aid the “Amrit Peedhi” in realizing their goals, the country has developed a National Education Policy 2020, which placed an emphasis on skill development, implemented economic policies that facilitate the creation of jobs at scale, and encouraged business opportunities.
This year, Rs 1.12 lakh crore instead of Rs 1.04 lakh crore was given to the Ministry of Education. For the education budget, this is the biggest ever allocation. The Department of Higher Education has been given Rs 44,094 crore, while the Department of School Education will receive Rs 68,804 crore.
Unified Skill India Digital Platform
With the introduction of an integrated Skill India Digital platform, Ms. Sitharaman announced that the digital ecosystem for skilling will be further developed. She provided more details about the platform, stating that it will
- Enable demand-based formal skilling
- Link with employers, primarily MSMEs
- Increase access to entrepreneurship schemes
Global Hub for Millets: “Shree Anna”
“India is at the forefront of popularizing millet, whose consumption boosts nutrition, food security, and farmer welfare,” Ms. Sitharaman cited the Prime Minister as saying. Given that India cultivates numerous varieties of “Shree Anna,” including jowar, ragi, bajra, kuttu, ramdana, kangni, kutki, kodo, cheena, and sama, India is believed to be both the world’s largest producer and second-largest exporter of this product.
PM Matsya Sampada Yojana
A new sub-scheme of the PM Matsya Sampada Yojana will be introduced with a targeted investment of 6,000 crores to further facilitate the activities of fish vendors, fishermen, and micro- and small businesses, increase the efficiency of the value chain and expand the market.
The Finance Minister emphasized the government’s iGOT Karamyogi initiative, which provides a learning opportunity for lakhs of government employees to improve their skills. “Under Mission Karmayogi, Centre, States, and Union Territories are making and implementing capacity-building plans for civil servants,”
Also read: Union Budget 2022: Skill Development, Education and Entrepreneurship https://www.nationalskillsnetwork.in/union-budget-2022-skill-development-education-and-entrepreneurship/
In order to make Electric Vehicles (EVs) more affordable in India, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the subsidies on batteries for EV would be extended for an additional year.
Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman stated, “I propose to continue the concessional duty on lithium-ion cells for batteries for another year.”