Infrastructure, healthcare get biggest boost in Union Budget 2021: Key takeaways

01 Feb 2021

The Union Budget 2021 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman was all about prioritizing key issues like creating more jobs, ramping up healthcare spending and boosting economic growth.

Two of the biggest winners in budget were healthcare and infrastructure as both got one of the biggest allocations in percentage terms. The allocation for the defence sector was also comparatively higher in the wake of the India-China conflict.

A host of announcements were also made on the government’s disinvestment strategy for the upcoming fiscal year starting April 1, 2021. It is also worth mentioning that no major tax changes were announced in the budget.

The funds allocated for infrastructure development and heathcare were the biggest highlights of Budget 2021. The decision is in line with the biggest hurdles India currently faces the Covid-19 pandemic and growth.

For healthcare, a new centrally-sponsored scheme, PM Atmanirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana, will be launched with an outlay of about Rs 64,180 crores over 6 years.

According to finance minister Sitharaman, this will be used to develop capacities of primary, secondary, and tertiary care health Systems, strengthen existing national institutions, and create new institutions, to cater to detection and cure of new and emerging diseases. This will be in addition to the National Health Mission. The total healthcare allocation in budget 2021 is Rs 2.23 lakh crore, which is a 135 per cent hike over the previous budget.

Dr Kanav Kahol, CEO, Divoc Labs, said, “The budget has recognized the importance of health in India’s growth story. The total budget outlay for healthcare is 2.23 lakh crore, which is an increase of 137 per cent from last year.”