New Delhi | Jagran Business Desk: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday announced the much-awaited Union Budget 2021 amid the COVID-19 pandemic and announced a slew of measure to revive the sagging economy which registered a record decline last year. 

In the Union Budget 2021, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced some reforms for the farmers of the country. Sitharaman said that Rs 75,100 crore has been allocated for the farmers of the country. The FM also announced an increase in agriculture credit target to Rs 16.5 lakh crore in FY 2021-22.

Apart from this, the government also said that procurement of produce by the government under the Minimum Support Price (MSP) will continue at a steady pace. Under this, 43.36 lakh wheat-growing farmers will be benefited from government procurement under the MSP as against 35.57 lakh previously. The total amount paid to paddy farmers has also been increased to Rs 1.72 lakh crore in 2020-21.

"Our government is committed to the welfare of farmers. The MSP (minimum support price) regime has undergone a sea change to assure price that is at least 1.5 times the cost of production across all commodities," Sitharaman said, adding that "the procurement has also continued to increase at a steady pace. This has resulted in an increase in payment to farmers substantially".

Announcing the Budget 2021, Nirmala Sitharaman also announced Agri cess on several products including petrol and diesel and also proposed to reduce Basic Customs Duty on these items.

"I propose an Agriculture Infrastructure and Development Cess (AIDC) on a small number of items. However, while applying this cess, we have taken care not to put additional burden on consumers on most items," Finance Minister Sitharaman said in her Budget speech.

"Consequently, unbranded petrol and diesel will attract basic excise duty of Rs 1.4, and Rs 1.8 per litre respectively. The Special Additional Excise Duty (SAED) on unbranded petrol and diesel shall be Rs 11 and Rs 8 per litre respectively. Similar changes have also been made for branded petrol and diesel," she added.

However, blended fuel-- M-15 petrol and E-20 petrol -- will be exempted from cesses and surcharges on the lines of other blended fuels (like E-5 and E-10) if these blended fuels are made of duty paid inputs.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan