Kurukshetra March 2023



The budget aims for the overall development of farmers and all sections of society, from the poor and middle class to women and youth.

The total budgetary allocation of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare is Rs. 1.25 lakh crore this time, which will prove to be a milestone with infrastructure growth in rural India.

A Digital Agriculture Mission has been initiated with the fund allocation in this budget of Rs. 450 crores, a substantial increase from last year’s allocation of Rs. 70 crore.

There are about 86 per cent small farmers in our country who have immensely benefited from Kisan Credit Card (KCC). In this budget, Rs. 23,000 crores has been allocated to enable our farmer to continue availing benefits like this through KCC.

        Prime Minister Matsya Sampada Yojana will be initiated with a targeted investment of Rs. 6000 crores, so that

fish farmers, fish sellers, and related micro and small-scale industries become more efficient.

The government has set a target of providing all facilities related to agriculture to small and medium farmers by aggregating them through Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs). For this, 10,000 new FPOs are being formed across the country.

Food and nutritional security is one of the priorities of the government for which the budget provision has been increased to Rs. 1623 crore, while under the government’s ambitious scheme, Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-Kisan) budget provision of Rs. 60 thousand crores has been made.

Indian Millets Research Institute, Hyderabad will be promoted as a Center of Excellence to make the country a global hub for ‘Shri Anna.’ According to the budget announcement, millets will now be known as Shri Anna.

        The budget provision for horticulture is increased from Rs. 1100 crore to 1800 crore.

An Aatma Nirbhar Clean Plant Programme will be launched to boost the availability of disease-free, quality planting material for high-value horticultural crops at an outlay of Rs. 2,200 crores.

Under the GOBARdhan (Galvanising OrganicBio-Agro Resources Dhan) scheme, 500 new ‘waste to wealth’ plants will be established to promote a circular economy at a total investment of Rs. 10,000 crore.

        The budget provision of Rs. 5,300 crores has been made for Bhadra Project to provide sustainable micro irrigation

and fill up surface drinking water tanks.



        The Budget speech emphasised seven priority areas to be focused by the government

    • inclusive development;
    • connecting targeted clients and reaching the last mile
    • boosting infrastructure and investment
    • bringing in innovation, technology for unleashing the latent productive potential
    • meeting climate change effects by developing and focusing green growth-led strategic action
    • identifying and consolidating the power of youth and enhancing their participation in the economic growth
    • strengthening financial sector for effective financial inclusion.

The higher allocation of resources for rural employment initiatives, crop husbandry, including farming and the raising of livestock, poultry and other activities, food storage and warehousing and rural housing indicate India’s resolve to transform rural areas into growth engines.

The Indian agriculture sector has been growing at an average annual growth rate of 4.6 per cent during the last six years. It grew by 3.0 per cent in 2021-22 compared to 3.3 per cent in 2020- 21.



Figure: Expenditure and Budget Allocation for Select Schemes


Kuru March 1


Rural Employment Programmes:

        Union Budget has allocated Rs. 60000 crores to MGNREGA and approximately Rs 14129 crore to National Rural Livelihood Mission. However, both schemes have witnessed a reduction of 17.8% and 0.8% respectively.

There is also a proposal to revamp the credit guarantee scheme of Micro, Small, and Medium enterprises through an additional equity infusion of Rs 9000 crore. It will enable the disbursement of collateral-free guaranteed credit of Rs. 2 lakh crores.

There is also an emphasis on the mobilization of more self-help groups for the creation and operation of the rural warehouse and other agri-logistics. It would help in improving the rural livelihood and incomes by converging rural development efforts with agri-infrastructure.


Livelihoods and Employment through Agridevelopment:

Number of measures have been suggested in the budget to increase production, productivity, farm and non-farm profits and farmers’ income. In order to achieve the expected goals of the government, we need to ensure active participatory actions towards

  1. reducing water stress by comprehensive water planning
  2. promoting natural and organic farming practice
  3. ensuring balanced use of fertilisers
  4. strengthening operation green initiatives though promotion and nurturing of Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs),
  5. establishing and enhancing agri-logistic facilities
  6. mapping and geo-tagging existing agri-logistics and ensuring viability funding for setting up such infrastructure
  7. enhancing holding capacity and reducing logistic costs of farmers
  8. connecting unconnected areas, building and sustaining a national cold supply chain;
  9. developing fodder farms through Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA)
  10. developing, promoting and making profitable fisheries sector through collectivized effort


Digital Infrastructure Push:

The Budget has crafted a much-required development path by facilitating building up of digital public infrastructure for agriculture as an open source, open standard and inter-operable public good.

        The Budget also envisages to set up an agriculture accelerator fund to encourage agri start-ups.

A cluster-based and value-chain approach through Public Private Partnership (PPP) has been planned to ensure collaborative efforts between farmers, State and industry for supply of input and extension services and effective market linkages with a view to enhance the productivity of cotton crops and increase the income of cotton growers.


Encouraging Nutri-Cereals:

Budget 2023-24 has appropriately emphasized encouragement of growth of millets production and consumption. Millets — which was becoming forgotten foods, has the prosperity to become the foods for the future generation.

The UN has announced 2023 as the International Year of Millets to drive this as a superfood and the food that further nutrition, food security and also the welfare of farmers.

The promotion of millet production and consumption will largely benefit India’s small and marginal farmers and would encourage them to re-engineer their farming systems and practices, knowledges and food production, consumption and distribution eco-system.

        To ensure the vision of health for all and nutritional food for all, there is a need to take immediate actions

    • identification, preservation, sharing and multiplication of quality seeds of millets by the help of community

seed cooperatives;

    • creation of incremental and specialised seed cooperatives or seed collectives right at the village level
    • setting up of small scale seed processing, manufacturing, packaging units
    • strengthening and expanding seed distribution network, etc.


Reposing Faith in Cooperatives:

The Budget vowed to ensure creation of grain storage capacity in each panchayat through Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS).

The Budget also desired to facilitate setting up of multi-purpose cooperative societies, primary fisheries and dairy cooperatives in uncovered panchayats/villages in next five years.

The registration of three new Multi-State Cooperatives in the areas of Quality Seed Production, organic Farming and Exports will go a long way in addressing issues of availability of quality seeds at the hands of farmers, promotion of natural and organic farm practices amongst stakeholders and profitable disposal of marketable surplus and, thereby, in reviving the extant cooperative model of economic growth.

The initiatives and programmes announced in the Union Budget 2023 have the required potential to re orient the rural economy. It also requires ensuring innovative and participatory investment opportunities, community participation, and research and development.



        The Indian government is committed to building an inclusive, accessible, affordable, efficient, and modern

healthcare ecosystem in the country.

There is an increase of 3.4% compared to the Budget 2022-23. A total of Rs. 89155 crores have been allocated to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

        Notably, the budgetary allocation for 2021-22 was Rs 73931.77 crores.

Healthcare has been a priority for the past few years and there has been a steady increase in the budgetary allocation for this sector.

India is referred to as the pharmacy of the world. It is also emerging as a medical tourism hub on the global healthcare map.



        The medical tourism industry of India is estimated to be $9 billion, making it the 10th biggest global medical tourism hub.

        The Budget documents have focused on the following aspects:

    • Investing in research and development
    • Modernizing healthcare infrastructure
    • Use of digital technology for healthcare services
    • Increasing trained medical professionals


Highlights of Budget related to Healthcare:

        157 new nursing colleges will be created.

        An amount of Rs 2980 crores has been assigned to the Department of Health Research.

        The budgetary allocation for ICMR has gone up by 7.4%. Some labs will be open for research by public and private medical schools.

        A mission to eliminate sickle cell anaemia by 2047 will be initiated with a focus on raising awareness and conducting universal screening of 7 million people between the ages of 0 to 40 years.

        The budget allocation for National Health Mission has gone up from Rs 28974 crores in 2022-23 to Rs 29085 crores in 2023-24.

        The National Digital Mission has also received a boost in funding from Rs 140 Crore in 2022 to Rs 341 crore in 2023.

        The allocations for Ayushman Bharat- Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojna have increased by 12% (to Rs 7200 crores).

        The budget allocation for AYUSH Ministry has also increased by 28%.

        Rs 6825 has also been allocated for the establishment of 22 new AIIMS.

        The government will also support the implementation of specialized multidisciplinary courses in medical devices to ensure a skilled workforce for advanced medical technology.

        A national governance policy will also be introduced to facilitate access to anonymous data.



The budget announcements are comprehensive and forward-looking, giving the sector its well-deserved attention.



        In India nearly two-third of total population and more than 70 percent of workforce reside in rural areas.

        Sustainable rural development with focus on agriculture and allied sectors has always been at the top of development agenda in India.

        India is committed to become $5 trillion economy by the year 2025 and the third largest economy in the world by 2027.

        Ministry has two departments: (i) rural development and (ii) land resources.

The Department of Rural Development (DoRD) plays a pivotal role in the implementation of Government schemes targeted at employment generation, poverty alleviation, infrastructure development and provision of basic services in rural area.

         The Department of Land Resources (DoLR) implements two key schemes:

  1. Integrated Watershed Development Component of Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana
  2. Digital India Land Records Modernisation Programme (DILRMP)


Allocation to Ministry of Rural Development in Union Budget 2023-24:

        The Ministry of Rural Development has been provided the seventh highest allocation across all Ministries in the

Union Budget for financial year 2023-24.



        Its allocation upsurged from Rs. 61,864 crore in 2013-14 to Rs. 1,59,964 crore in 2023-24, reflecting a linear growth

rate 10.32 per cent per annum.

The budgeted expenditure of the Department of Land resources came down by 3.98 per cent during the last decade despite witnessing a sharp rise of 92 percent in 2023-24 over the previous year.


Major Schemes under the Department of Rural Development:

The budget allocation to all centrally sponsored schemes for rural development went up from Rs. 1,08,175 crore to Rs. 1,57,545 crore witnessing a growth rate of 7.84 per cent per annum during the last seven years.

But it came down by 13.02 per cent in 2023-24 as compared to the previous year. It declined due to unusually high expenditure on Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme during the COVID-19 pandemic period.

  1. The fall in allocation can be attributed to lower demand for work due to strong agricultural growth and a post-pandemic recovery resulting in better employment opportunities.
  2. In 2023-24, it accounts for nearly 38% of total expenditure on all centrally sponsored schemes of rural development.



Budget Allocation to Centrally Sponsored Schemes for Rural Development



Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme:

        It is the most important among all the schemes of rural development.

It seeks to strengthen the livelihood resource base of the poor by providing 100 days of guaranteed wage employment per year to every rural house hold whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work.

The scheme was introduced in the year 2005 through the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act.

        Under this scheme during the year 2022-23, assets worth Rs. 7.10 crore were created through the generation of

253.11 crore person days benefiting 5.82 crore households up to February, 2023.

In the union budget 2023-24, the allocation for the MGNREGS has been slashed nearly by 33 per cent accounting for Rs. 60,000 crore as compared to Rs. 89,400 crore of revised expenditure of 2022-23.

The fall in allocation could be attributed to lower demand of works under MGNREGA due to the strong agricultural growth and a swift recovery from COVID-19 induced slowdown, resulting in better employment opportunities in rural areas.

Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme accounted for nearly 38 per cent of total expenditure on all centrally sponsored schemes of rural development.



        It is followed in descending order by Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana- Gramin (35 per cent), Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (12 per cent) and National Rural Livelihood Mission (9 per cent).





















Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana- Gramin:

        This scheme, aims at providing financial assistance to the rural poor for construction of pucca houses of 25 sq. mt. with all basic amenities (piped drinking water, electricity connection, LPG gas connection etc.).

        Originally launched in 1985 as Indira Awas Yojana, PMAY-G was revamped in November 2016 with the objective to provide around 3 crore houses to all the eligible rural households by the year 2024.

        Total of 2.83 crore houses have been sanctioned and 2.14 crore have been completed by February, 2023 under the Scheme.


Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana:

        It was launched on 25” December 2000 by the then Prime Minister Sh. Atal Bihari Vajpayee as the fully funded central Government scheme.

        The primary objective of the scheme is to promote economic activities in rural India by providing all-weather road connectivity to the eligible un-connected rural habitations.

        The scheme has been allocated Rs. 19,000 crore in 2023-24, accounting for nearly 12 per cent of the total budget of Department of Rural Development.

        Since, the inception of the scheme total 1,74,029 works with road length of 7,25,774 kilometers were constructed till February, 2023.


National Rural Livelihoods Mission:

        (NRLM) was launched by the Government of India in June 2011.

        It was renamed as Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana National Rural Livelihood Mission (DAY-NRLM) on March 29, 2016.

        It aims at creating diversified and gainful self-employment to the rural poor through sustainable livelihood enhancements and improved access to financial services.

        The budget allocation to the Mission increased from Rs. 4,327 crore in 2017-18 to Rs. 14,129 crore in 2023-24.


National Social Assistance Programme:

        It comprises of many sub-schemes aimed at providing public assistance to citizens in case of unemployment, old age, sickness and any form of disability.



        The scheme has been in existence since 1995.

        The majors chemes under this programme include

  • Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme
  • Indira Gandhi National Widow Pension Scheme,
  • Indira Gandhi National Disability Pension Scheme,
  • National Family Benefit Scheme and
  • Annapurna Scheme. In 2022-23

        The Programme was allocated Rs. 9,652 crore, which is nearly 18.40 per cent increase over the expenditure of previous year.


Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission:

        Launched on 21st February 2016.

        It aims at developing cluster of villages that preserve and nurture the essence of rural community life with focus on equity and inclusiveness without compromising the facilities perceived to be essentially urban in nature.

        The main objective is to bridge the rural-urban divide viz; economic, technological and those related to

        modern facilities for stimulating local economic development with emphasis on employment generation in rural areas.


Budgetary Allocations for Agriculture:

        The budgetary allocation for the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare went up from Rs 26071 in 2013-14 to Rs 125036 in 2023-24.

        It reflects a growth of 17.20% per annum during the last decade.

        The budget allocation for the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation, and Farmers’ Welfare witnessed a growth rate of 18.12 % in the period of 2013 to 2023.

        The budget allocation for the Department of Agriculture Research and Education went up at a rate of 6.70% during 2013-2023.

        Income support is also provided to farmers through the PM KISAN yojana.

        Moreover, Agriculture Accelerator Fund will also be established to encourage agri-startups



        To conclude, balanced regional development with focus on rural areas has always been at the top of development agenda in India.

In the union budget 2023- 24, liberal funds have been provided for generating income and employment in rural areas through increased public expenditure on the schemes and programmes formulated for this purpose.

The Government’s initiatives towards more inclusive growth, social protection and gender responsive development will certainly pave the way for journey of the country to become the third largest economy in the world by 2027.



        The contribution of the MSME sector to overall Gross Value Added (GVA) increased from 29.3 per cent in 2018-19 to 30.5 per cent in 2019-20.

        The MSME sector accounts for over 90 per cent of industrial units, 40 per cent of the total manufacturing output and nearly 35 per cent of India’s exports.

        A significantly large proportion of MSME sector operate in rural areas and after agriculture, this sector is the

biggest employment provider in rural areas and hence crucial for socio-economic wellbeing of rural populace.



Some of the measures undertaken includes the modification of the definition of MSMEs, launching of the Udyam portal for MSME registration, a paperless, zero-cost registration portal that is based on self-declaration and only requires Aadhaar.

Various initiatives have also been taken to provide an opportunity to small retailers, manufacturers, and Self-Help Groups (SHGs) for greater outreach.


Challenges for MSMEs:

        MSMEs grapple with situations like low levels of technology use.

        They have limited access to inputs and credit facilities.

They have an unfavourable market environment and fall outside the ambit of formal business and labour regulations.

        Rural MSMEs witness more locational disadvantages as compared to their urban counterpart.

The MSME sector was severely impacted by the COVID-19-induced lockdown. They witnessed supply chain disruptions, reduced demands, loss of revenue, etc


Key Provisions Under the Current Year Budget 2023-24:

The budget made a provision of infusing Rs. 9,000 crore in the corpus of the Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE), which will enable additional collateral-free credit of Rs. 2 lakh crore to MSMEs with a reduction of the cost of credit by 1 per cent.

National Financial Information Registry will be set up to serve as the central repository of financial and ancillary information and enable an efficient flow of credit.

The limit for presumptive taxation increased for micro enterprises with a turnover of up to Rs. 2 crore to Rs. 3 crore and for certain professionals with a turnover of up to Rs. 50 lakh to Rs. 75 lakh.

The government and government undertakings will return 95 per cent of the forfeited amount related to bid or performance security in cases of failure of MSMEs to execute contract during the COVID-19 period in order to provide relief to MSMEs.

        The GOBARdhan (Galvanising Organic Bio-Agro Resources Dhan)scheme will help-

    • villages manage their cattle waste, agriculture waste, and, in the long run, all organic waste safely,
    • communities turn their cattle and organic waste into wealth by utilizing decentralised systems
    • convert organic waste, particularly cattle waste, into biogas and fertiliser for rural use,
    • encourage rural entrepreneurship, employment, and income generation.

A new schemes called ‘Mahila Samman Saving Certificate’ was announced in the current budget. Under this scheme, onetime new small saving with deposit facility for the women and girls will be for a period of two years, with rate of interest 7.5 per cent.



Cooperative institutions, though had played a crucial role in the past for inclusive and sustainable rural development did not get due attention from policy makers.

A robust mechanism should be designed to aggressively sensitise the entrepreneurs across size class, about budgetary provisions which are meant for them and how they can access these provisions.

The existing institutions such as MSE Facilitation Council (MSEFC), District Industries Centres (DICs), State Rural Livelihood Mission (SRLMs), RSETIs, Industry Associations and local institutions such as panchayat must work together in this direction



The education sector is going through a rapid transformation with the implementation of the National Education Policy 2020.



        Along with improving the employability of people in the working age group, education also breaks the cycles of poverty and social exclusion and promotes equality.

Goal 4 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, “Quality Education,” intends to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for everyone” by the year 2030.

        The Budget 2023-24 aims to promote an equitable and inclusive education system across the country.

        In India, access to school is now recognized as a non-negotiable part of a child’s right to education.


Status of Education:

        The Gross Access Ratio in 2021-22 at the primary level is 97.49%, 97.01% at the upper primary level, and 95.48% at the secondary level.

        According to Unified District Information System for Education Plus (UDISE+), approximately 26.5 crore children are enrolled in schools.

        Moreover, the enrollment of children with special needs stood at 22.67 lakhs in 2021-22.

        Initiatives taken in the year 2022-23 include PM- SHRI, National Curriculum Framework for Foundational Stage, disability screening app called PRASHAST, National Credit Framework, Balvatikas, etc.


Key Budgetary Provisions in 2023-24:

        The budgetary allocation for the education sector is approximately Rs. 112899.47 crores. The Department of School Education is allotted Rs. 68804 crores and the Department of Higher Education is allotted Rs. 44094 crores.

        The budget has followed on following key areas:


  1. Teachers’ Training

District Institutes of Education and Training will play a crucial role in in-service teachers getting high-quality training. They will be made centres of excellence for research and dissemination of best practices in teachers’ education.


  1. National Digital Library for Children and Adolescents

        A national digital library for schools will be developed with the work of reputable Indian and international authors.

        States will be urged to establish physical libraries at the ward and panchayat levels.

        In the next three years, the government will appoint nearly 38800 teachers and support personnel for 740 Eklavya Model Residential Schools that will provide education to 3.5 lakh tribal children.

        There is an increase in budget allotment for Samagra Siksha, PM SHRI, the World Bank-aided STARS scheme, New India Literacy Programme, etc.

        Provisions for Higher Education:

    • Three  Centres  of  Excellence  for  Artificial  Intelligence  will  be  established  in  prestigious  educational institutions to “Make AI work for India a reality”.
    • 100 labs for developing apps using 5G services will be established in Higher Education Institutions.
    • One of the IITs will get equipment and seeds from Lab Grown Diamonds (LDGs) for a period of five years.

LDG is a research and development grant for indigenous production

    • Multidisciplinary courses in medical devices and programmes to promote research in pharmaceuticals will be introduced to strengthen the “Jai Anusandhaan” motto.
    • National Data Governance Policy: To unleash innovation and research by start-ups and academia,



India has made significant strides in achieving universal access to elementary education and is working diligently to meet the SDG target of achieving equitable, inclusive and quality secondary education for all by 2030.The Union Budget 2023-24 is a step to augment and further the efforts to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 4 (Quality Education).



Budget 2023-24 is an important step towards not only boosting the domestic manufacturing and services sector through elevated public spending, especially capital spending, but also to incentivize domestic manufacturing and steering the country on the path of green growth, thereby emphasizing the country’s commitment to achieve net zero emission by 2070.

        In the wake of the Russia-Ukraine War, the COVID-19-induced lockdown in China, and the global economic

slowdown, Annual Budget 2023-24 is of great significance.

Government decisions in the Annual Budget impact the various sectors such as- Government Spending, Direct Taxation and Indirect Taxation.


Impact of Budget on Trade and Industry:

One of the major highlight of the Union Budget 2023-24 is that it has laid a great thrust on ‘Green Growth’. For instance, the National Green Hydrogen Mission (NGHM) with an outlay of Rs 19,700 crores will facilitate the transition to a low-carbon economy.

        The agriculture credit target will be enhanced by Rs 20 lakh crore with a focus on animal husbandry, fisheries,

and dairy.

A programme to promote research and development in pharmaceuticals through Centres of Excellence is also proposed.

There is a plan to set up massive decentralized storage capacity that will help farmers store their produce and realise remunerative prices through sale at appropriate times

        100 critical transport infrastructures for last-mile connectivity have been identified and an investment of Rs 75000

crore has been provided in this context.

An Urban Infrastructure Development Fund (on the lines of the Rural Infrastructure Development fund) for Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities will be established. It will be managed by National Housing Bank.

Nearly 39000 compliances have been reduced to promote Ease of Doing Business. Additionally, 3400 legal provisions have been de-criminalized.

Around 500 new ‘Waste to Wealth’ programmes will be established under the GOBARdhan scheme with a total investment of Rs 10000 crore.

        The auto sector will be benefitted from the Vehicle Scrapping Policy and reduction to 0% of the customs duty on

specified capital goods/machinery for the manufacture of lithium-ion cells.

        Mobile phone production in India has benefitted from Phased Manufacturing Programme. There were 31 crore

units valued at over Rs 275000 crore in the financial year 2022-23.

        Basic customs duty is reduced from 5% to 2.5% on acid-grade fluorspar in order to make the domestic fluorspar

chemical industry competitive.

Concessional Basic Customs Duty is also being provided for ferrous and copper scrap to ensure the availability of raw materials for secondary copper producers mainly in MSME sector.



The budget 2023-24 is an important step that will not only improve domestic manufacturing and services but will also incentivize green growth methods, thus emphasizing India’s commitment to achieving net zero emissions by 2070.




        The budget speech mentioned ‘Tourism’ as one of the four opportunities that can create credible transformations in India in the coming decades.

According to the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), tourists are people travelling for leisure and other purposes from their usual place of residence to their destination for at least one night and not more than one year and return back to their place of origin.

        Tourist Generating Regions are the regions where the tourist journey starts and ends. They are traditionally high- income regions as the population has some discretionary income to engage in travelling and leisure activities.

        Top 10 Source countries for Foreign Tourist Arrival in India


        The tourism sector suffered the most due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The year 2022 saw the gradual opening of the sector.

        The government of India launched ‘Dekho Apna Desh’ to promote domestic tourism.

        Outbound tourism from India witnessed an annual growth rate of 17.3 % (8.55 million) in 2021 whereas domestic tourism stood at 677.3 million with an annual growth rate of 11%.


Budgetary provisions for Tourism Sector:

        The budget allocation for the sector is Rs 2400 crore.

        Rs 1412 has been allocated to Swadesh Darshan Scheme. Gol had launched Swadesh Darshan Scheme in year 2014-15 with a view to promote integrated development of thematic tourist circuits in the country.

        Rs 105 crore has been allocated for training and skill development and building capacity in the sector.

Rs 250 crore has been allocated for the PRASHAD scheme. National Mission on Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASHAD), is a Central Sector Scheme focussed on integrated development of identified pilgrimage and heritage destinations.

        The budget has also announced the development of 50 new tourist destinations in the country.



        Infrastructure and investment are one of the seven priorities (Saptarishi) in the budget which will also have a role in the Tourism industry.

        Rural tourism is also being promoted through the Vibrant Village Programme.

        Border tourism is being given huge importance also because of its strategic connotations.

        The cruise tourism potential is yet to be unveiled in India with a vast coastline of 7500 km. In this direction, MV Ganga Vilas is a great step.

        Through Amrit Dharohar, a scheme that will be implemented to encourage optimal use of wetlands, and enhance bio-diversity, carbon stock, eco-tourism opportunities and income generation for local communities.

        Budgetary allocation of approximately Rs 3400 crore to the Ministry of Culture will also complement tourism in India.



        Tourism sector thus spearheads growth, improves the quality of people’s lives with its capacity to create largescale employment of diverse kind and protect the environment if properly managed.


Mains Practice Questio:

    1. Establish relationships between land reforms, agricultural productivity and elimination of poverty in the Indian

economy. Discuss the difficulties in designing and implementation of agriculture – friendly land reforms in India.