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Budget 2021: Reinvigorating Human Capital, Innovation and R&D

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Fahid Fayaz Darangay
As per Article 112 of the constitution, a union budget is basically the statement of the estimated receipts and expenditure of the government. It is also known as the annual financial statement of the government.
Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance is the nodal body responsible for preparing the Budget. Budget 2021-22 is the first budget of the new decade 2021-30 and is also the first ever digital union budget. This budget which comes in the backdrop of unprecedented COVID-19 crisis reflects the firm commitment of the Government to boost economic growth by investing in infrastructure development.
Budget proposals for 2021-2022 rest on 6 pillars: The two are as:
Reinvigorating Human Capital
Innovation and R&D
1. Education:
 15,000 schools will be qualitatively strengthened to include all components of the National Education Policy. 100 new Sainik Schools will be set up in partnership with NGOs/private schools/states.
 Proposal to set up a Higher Education Commission of India, as an umbrella body having 4 separate vehicles for standard-setting, accreditation, regulation, and funding.
 For accessible higher education in Ladakh, Government proposed to set up a Central University in Leh.
2. Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Welfare:
 Set a target of establishing 750 Eklavya model residential schools in tribal areas.
 Enhanced Central Assistance under the revamped Post Matric Scholarship Scheme for the welfare of Scheduled Castes for 6 years till 2025-2026.
3. Skilling:
 Realign the existing scheme of National Apprenticeship Training Scheme (NATS) for providing post-education apprenticeship, training of graduates and diploma holders in Engineering.
 Initiatives for partnership with other countries in skilling to be taken forward, similar to partnership:
• With UAE to benchmark skill qualifications, assessment, certification, and deployment of certified workforce
• With Japan for a collaborative Training Inter Training Programme (TITP) to transfer of skills, technique and knowledge
4. National Research Foundation: Announced with an outlay of Rs. 50,000 crore, over 5 years. It will ensure that the overall research ecosystem of the country is strengthened with focus on identified national-priority thrust areas.
5. National Language Translation Mission (NTLM): This will enable the wealth of governance-and-policy related knowledge on the Internet being made available in major Indian languages.
6. Deep Ocean Mission will be launched with a budget outlay of more than `4,000 crores, over five years. This Mission will cover deep ocean survey exploration and projects for the conservation of deep sea bio-diversity.
7. New Space India Limited (NSIL), a PSU under the Department of Space will execute the PSLV-CS51 launch, carrying the Amazonia Satellite from Brazil, along with a few smaller Indian satellites.
(The author is currently pursuing Masters in Financial Economics from Madras School of Economics, Chennai)



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