President Kovind delivered his first address for 2020 in the Parliament today, marking the beginning of the Budget Session.
In his address, he noted:
- India has the world’s third largest start-up ecosystem. 27,000 new start-ups have been recognised under the Startup India Campaign.
- Merging the small public sector banks has strengthened them and improved their lending capacity. In the first half of 2019-20, 12 public sector banks have reported profits.
- Under the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme, funds from more than 450 schemes are being directly credited into the accounts of beneficiaries. Since 2014, more than nine lakh crore rupees has been transferred through DBT. Further, DBT has prevented leakages worth Rs 1.7 lakh crore.
- The government has approved Chandrayaan-3. ISRO is working on a manned spacecraft programme – Gaganyaan, and Aditya-1 Mission.
- The Department of Fisheries has been created to achieve doubling the fishermen’s income and fish production.
The Finance Minister tabled the Economic Survey for 2020-21. The report noted a 5% GDP growth for 2019-20 and forecasted a 6% to 6.5% GDP growth for 2020-21.