As India gallops towards the $5-trillion mark and then onwards to $10 trillion, the guiding light or the marker for this explosive economic achievement will be the ‘Saptarishi’ priorities of the union Government that were so well enunciated in the Budget 2023.
Outlining the seven priorities while presenting the first Budget of Amrit Kaal (the next 25 years), Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman projected these priorities as an economic turning point for India. These include: inclusive development; reaching the last mile; infrastructure and investment; unleashing potential; green growth; youth power; and financial sector.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi elaborated on these seven elements, and how they will be transformational, in a series of 12 crucial post-Budget webinars held between February 23 and March 11. The series was organised by various ministries and departments to build on the ‘Saptrishi’ priorities.
A continuing process
The webinars are, in fact, a part of the continuing process of budgetary reforms undertaken since this Government took office in 2014. The most major reform was advancing the Budget to February 1 so that ministries and departments get sufficient time for utilisation of the funds on the ground before the onset of monsoons. Another step was the idea of post-Budget webinars.’
The idea of post-Budget webinars was conceptualised by the Prime Minister himself to get all stakeholders in one platform to create bringing synergy in the implementation of Budget announcements. Each of these webinars is a vision statement on the direction that the country will be taking in the next two decades, including fundamental changes in a wide range of critical areas to not just simply beef up infrastructure but also fast-track systems and create robust regulatory mechanisms to ensure that the largest number of citizens can avail of the benefits of these programmes.
Capex grows five times
Addressing one such webinar– the eighth in the series — on the subject of ‘Infrastructure and Investment: Improving logistic efficiency with PM Gatishakti National Master Plan’, the Prime Minister expressed happiness that hundreds of stakeholders took part in the webinar along with more than 700 CEOs and MDs joining the meet.
He told the audience that India’s capex has increased five times compared to 2013- 14 and the Government is moving with a target of investing 110 lakh crore rupees under the National Infrastructure Pipeline. “This is a time of new responsibilities, new possibilities, and bold decisions for every stakeholder”.
In the first webinar on ‘Green Growth’, the Prime Minister outlined three pillars for green growth and energy transmission.
First, increasing the production of renewable energy; second, reducing the use of fossil fuel in the economy; and finally, rapidly moving towards a gas-based economy in the country. He said that India’s commanding position in the renewable energy space will ensure a commensurate change in the world.
“This Budget will play a key role in establishing India as a lead player in the global green energy market. This Budget is not only an opportunity, but it also contains the guarantee of our future security”, the Prime Minister said as he urged all stakeholders to act quickly to implement its every provision.
The PM’s interaction during these webinars is a virtual roadmap for the future, on how to help transform India. Watch it and tell your friends and colleagues to watch it. Each of us has a role to play in transforming this great nation.