After Lok Sabha, the Prime Minister responded to the discussion on Motion of Thanks to the President's Address in Rajya Sabha today. Addressing the concerns of the Members on jobs in the economy, the Prime Minister quoted EPFO payroll data to state that 1.2 crore people registered with the EPFO in 2021. Adding that these were formal jobs, he said that more than half of the 1.2 crore people entered the job market for the first time. He also spoke about the rise of unicorns (startups valued at $1 billion or higher) in 2021. The Prime Minister said that these should be taken into account as well while discussing employment generation in the country.
Following the reply, the Motion of Thanks was passed. The House then took up the general discussion on the Union Budget. The Budget discussion began in Lok Sabha on Monday.
Members in the two Houses said that the allocation towards the MGNREGA should be increased and support to the MSMEs must go beyond the credit guarantee scheme announced. Another Member highlighted that MGNREGA is demand-driven and expressed confidence in the government to meet the demand for work in the coming year.
During Zero Hour in Rajya Sabha, one Member raised the need to levy GST on cryptocurrency. A Member suggested that the government must levy a 28% GST on the entire transaction value. Arguing that cryptocurrency has no intrinsic value, he requested the government to tax crypto trade in line with the GST on betting, lottery etc.
In Lok Sabha, a supplementary question was asked about providing tax breaks to Tesla to encourage its entry into the Indian market. The Minister of State for Heavy Industries informed the House that the automaker has not applied under a PLI scheme available to both domestic and international manufacturers. 115 applications under the PLI scheme have been received, 50 from foreign corporations, the Minister added.
The Rural Development Committee tabled a report examining the MGNREGA program in Parliament.
Proceedings in Lok Sabha were ongoing at the time of uploading this post.
Numbers to note
₹ 324.36 crore
The Ministry of Finance informed Rajya Sabha today that 472 electoral bonds were issued across 10 branches of the State Bank of India in 2020-21. Of these 66% were of 1 crore denomination, and 23% were of ten lakh denomination. The total amount of electoral bonds encashed by political parties in 2020-21 was ₹324.36 crore.
₹ 38.7 crore
The Environment Ministry informed Lok Sabha that Rs. 38.7 crore has been allocated to the cheetah introduction project for the years 2021-22 to 2025-26. The Action Plan for introduction of cheetahs in India was announced in the National Tiger Conservation Authority meeting in January.