Reactions on budget are overflowing as the industry veterans and business leaders are welcoming the budget announcement. On the contrary, some defy with some of the announcements made. Here we have more business leaders who have shared their reactions on the Budget 2022 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

Virendra Ranawat, Co-Founder, WoodenStreet

With Union Budget 2022-23, a lot of expectations have been met. Healthcare and infrastructure were the main highlights of the budget 2022 and immense investment has been allocated for the expansion of roadways and logistics networks. Just like it was expected, the youth and startups were given keen importance in the budget as well. The ECLGS credit scheme guarantee cover has been expanded by Rs 50,000 crore, which will provide collateral-free loans to stressed-out MSMEs.

The budget also announced “one station one product” programme will facilitate local supply chains, this will be a huge improvement impact on small farmers and MSMEs. The budget also revealed about 100 PM Shakti Cargo terminals, which will develop in the next three years. Overall, this year’s budget will bring positive change for the MSMEs and other small industries.

Dikshu Kureja, Infrastructure Expert and Urban Planner

The budget anchored on a vision for India @ 100 years has created a blueprint for sustainable development for India’s modernisation and transformation. The focus on urban planning as a medium to look at the development of our cities is a very welcome move.

As India’s urban population continues to increase and is slated to be 50% of its total population by 2047, there is a huge shift required towards urbanisation to prevent our cities from crippling.

The proposal to lay focus on Tier 2 & 3 cities shall lead to more balanced development. The allocation of 250 crores to 5 institutions for developing new urban planning ideas is going to foster innovation. This would lead to a reimagination of our cities on a sustainable development model.

As part of PM’s announcement of India moving towards a Net Zero economy, the enhanced allocation towards sustainable transport with fossil fuel-free technology, solar power, etc is all very purposeful proposals towards a circular economy.

The proposal to take the concept of TODs (Transit Oriented Development) to many other cities is a good urban design strategy and is a successful reaffirmation of India’s first TOD project for DDA called East Delhi Hub designed by CP Kukreja Architects.

Proposal of a Masterplan for expressways across our country and establishing 100 cargo terminals in 3 years shall strengthen the infrastructure spine of the country. The budget has demonstrated a balance between the immediate needs of the country and the blueprint for a long term sustainable development towards achieving the vision for India at 100 in 2047.

Raghavendra Goud Vaggu, General Manager of Cytiva South Asia

As per the FM Nirmala Sitharaman’s Union Budget, India’s GDP is estimated to grow at about 9.27%. That means as a nation, we are primed to withstand many challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic due to our higher penetration of vaccinations. All we need to do is maintain this strong position our economy finds itself in.

Since we are still in the midst of the Omicron wave, the FM observes that the speed of our prompt and all-encompassing vaccination campaign has helped greatly. She’s also confident that with ‘Sabka Prayaas’, we’ll continue on a strong growth path. During Amrit Kaal, our government aims to achieve the vision for India@100 that was unveiled by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his Independence Day Address.

Amith Agarwal, Co-Founder & CEO, AgriBazaar

This year’s budget is forward-looking and takes a long-term view of making India an economic superpower. Key areas to promote self-sufficiency, Atmanirbhar Bharat and a simpler life for the citizen are the thrust areas alongside infrastructure-led capex spending. One of the key initiatives of Madam Minister that will have a ripple effect for the rural economy is the announcement of laying of optical fibre line in villages under BharatNet project under PPP in 2022-23. Digitization of rural India and making high-speed internet available to every villager will result in higher incomes and a better quality of living.

FM’s announcement of a comprehensive scheme that reduces the reliance on oilseed imports is good news as it will focus on changing the crop sowing pattern of the Indian farmer. In addition, it will save precious foreign exchange and ensure higher price realization for the Indian farmer.The announcement of Kisan drones for promoting crop assessment, digitizing land records, spraying agri-nutrients like fertilizers and pesticides, etc., will give a fillip to increasing the yield of the small and marginal farmers. Moreover, it will bring about scientific thinking towards Indian agriculture.

Similarly, promoting chemical-free natural farming in India is a big step in ensuring healthy produce for Indians and making our agriculture export-ready. Especially for premium markets like Europe, the USA, Japan, etc. Additionally, it will reduce the input expense of the Indian farmer, resurrect soil health, and ensure we take care of mother nature. Including 100% of India’s 1.5 lakh post office on the core banking system is transformational.

It will not only speed up financial inclusion but ensure farmers in rural areas can link their bank and post office accounts. We believe it will help in easy availability of finance for the small rural customers. I look forward to the fund, which will have blended capital raised under the co-investment model through NABARD for financial start-ups in the agriculture and rural enterprises. It will attract capital in the rural sector and ensure scientific upgrades in the farm produce value chain.

Raghunandan Saraf, Founder & CEO, Saraf Furniture

Production Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme for achieving the prime goal of ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ has received excellent response from the domestic MSMEs, who were looking for the support from the government in the tough times.

The government believes that these sectors, with the help of the given scheme, have a potential to create more than 60 lakh new jobs and additional production of Rs 30 lakh crore during next five years, supporting the Indian Economy.

To aid the ailing sector, the honorable finance minister has announced an Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) extended up to March 2023 in the Budget.

This scheme guarantees cover extended by Rs 50,000 crore and now total up to Rs 5 lakh crore. MSMEs such as Udyam, e-shram, NCS & Aseem portals will be inter-linked, their scope will be widened.

Awal Madaan, CEO and Founder, AwalEnglish.com

In my opinion, the budget has addressed various pain-points of the education sector, which is a key sector in skilling the workforce and pushing up economic growth.

The decision of giving equal broadband access to both rural and urban areas has won my heart because it will help millions of students study and compete with the world. Moreover, it will save a substantial amount of travel time for the students, which gets wasted in getting the right education from institutes in the nearby cities and towns.

My thumbs-up to the government’s concrete plans to introduce 5G connectivity, as it will strengthen the digital infrastructure of the country, which in turn will support the education sector. This visionary government has taken another positive step by focusing on the emerging careers with its plans for boosting the industries like animation, audio-visual, artificial intelligence and gaming in the financial year 2022-23. On the whole, this year’s budget will certainly be a driver of growth and a game-changer for the education sector.

Maninder Singh Bajwa, CEO and Founder, iScuela

Extremely happy to hear about the expansion of PM -eVidya Channels. While internet and smartphone penetration is increasing each passing year, there is still a large number of households that don’t have access.  This is a big step towards increasing accessibility and making quality education accessible via TVs to every nook and corner of India.

It was encouraging to hear the Government’s vision to improve the village digital infrastructure to bring it at par with cities. Affordable 5G rollout in 2022 will open doors to unlimited possibilities to bring high quality interactive learning experiences for everyone. Similarly, setting up a digital university will provide a model for digital schools. This will lay the foundation to implement the new education policy using all that the latest in technology provides.

Sonica Aron, Founder and Managing Partner, Marching Sheep

I think it is a very positive move. In a country where ‘’mental health’ has been a taboo subject for very long, the government taking steps to normalise and help citizens deal with it is very welcome. It will help remove the stigma around mental health issues as well as make help more accessible to the masses.

Also, the 3 schemes to provide integrated development for women and Children is a positive step. In a country where 48.5% of the population is women, they play a pivotal role in building the economy. Today women are not just caregivers at home, they are contributing in every walk of life, and are also playing a critical role in shaping our future citizens and leaders, our children. Their preventive and corrective health needs being addressed in a systemic, holistic, consistent manner is something that the country needs. We need quality healthcare which is accessible and affordable.

The platform for the National Digital Health Ecosystem will indeed make it easier for the masses to access mental health support when needed. It will also help spread awareness about the fact that mental health is not a weakness or something to be ashamed of.