Thursday, August 16News That Matters

Budget 2018-19: Government focuses on infrastructure expansion

When the Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presented the Budget 2018-19, the focus and emphasis on infrastructure was evident as he allocated Rs. 5.97 lakh crore for continued development of the crucial sector.

AVIATION SECTOR

A day after the budget was presented, MoS Civil Aviation, Jayant Sinha presented a blueprint on what has been planned for the sector. Addressing the press, the minister said 4 points have been at the core of the aviation sector which are sea planes, UDAAN scheme, NABH Nirman and disinvestment.

Government’s main focus is NABH Nirman which stands for Next Generation Airports for Bharat to expand the airport capacity more than five times to handle a billion trips per year.

Announcement on sea planes was also made in the budget for tourism and emergency services.

RAILWAYS

In the Budget, Finance minister outlined railways as a priority area for the government. He said that the entire railway network will be transformed into broad gauge. Rs. 1.48 lakh crore will be allocated for railways in the next fiscal.

ROADS

Ambitious Bharatmala Pariyojana has been approved for providing seamless connectivity of interior and backward areas and borders of the country to develop about 35,000 kms in Phase-I at an estimated cost of Rs 5.35 lakh crore.

DIGITAL INFRASTRUCTURE

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley proposed to double the expenditure on the government’s flagship Digital India programme to Rs. 3,073 crore for the next fiscal. The government also proposed to set up 5 lakh wi-fi hotspots which will provide broadband access to 5 crore rural citizens.

One hopes that with focus and emphasis on these important sectors. India’s economy will grow at a faster pace and the benefits will eventually percolate to all sections of society.

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