India Inc on Monday hailed Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Budget for 2021-22 as a reformist one that reimagines India’s self-reliance like never before and will drive revival of the economy from the impact of the pandemic with enhanced spending.
The focus on growth over fiscal consolidation, healthcare spending and steps to further help the startup ecosystem came in for praise from industry leaders across different sectors.
‘Coming in the backdrop of a global pandemic of the century, it boldly spells the government’s growth agenda and a march towards building a new and prosperous India. The budget clearly has the stamp of our Prime Minister with a clarion call for ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’ and ‘Vocal for Local’,’ Founder and Chairman of Bharti Enterprises Sunil Bharti Mittal said.
The first budget of this new decade reimagines India in the form of Aatmanirbhar Bharat like never before, he added.
Echoing similar views, Vedanta Resources Executive Chairman Anil Agarwal tweeted, ‘Congratulations to @narendramodi and FM @nsitharaman for a very reformist #Budget2021 with many big ideas including strategic disinvestment of two public sector banks & one insurance company. Thrust on infrastructure will boost growth.’ Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra said in a time of unprecedented economic stress, the government’s responsibility was to spend enough to revive the economy or else face enormous human suffering.
‘So I had one expectation from this budget: that we should be very liberal in terms of the targeted fiscal deficit. Box ticked,’ Mahindra tweeted.
Lauding the finance minister for the focus on healthcare spending and immunization especially for COVID-19 and the pneumococcal vaccines, Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla said this will help India recover rapidly from this pandemic.
‘Hopefully, this will also encourage more innovation and expansion in the sector,’ he added.
Apollo Hospitals Group Chairman Prathap C Reddy said Sitharaman’s announcements to develop primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare systems will provide access to medical care for all in India, fuel job creation and boost economic momentum.
Bringing in the cricketing angle, RPG Enterprises Chairman Harsh Goenka tweeted,’Combination of Pujara & Pant innings – consistency and flamboyance! Steady focus on infra, commercial laws, ease of business with big shots of monetising PSU assets, new divestments, insurance FDI. India won in Australia. Now India shall rise above in new world order’.
Terming the budget visionary and growth-oriented, ITC Chairman and Managing Director Sanjiv Puri said it provides further impetus to build India’s competitiveness as also foster inclusive growth.
Congratulating Sitharaman for presenting a ‘pathbreaking, inclusive budget in these unprecedented times’, Hinduja Group co-Chairman Gopichand Hinduja said,’The high fiscal deficit would be a worry for many, however, these uncertain times call for high government spending’.
Essar Capital Director Prashant Ruia said the Budget ‘attempts to put a medium to long term foundation to the emergency measures undertaken by the government in the first nine months of the pandemic. By all measures, the government has done a fine job at reviving the growth impulses in the economy’.
Ficci President Uday Shankar said the budget is a clear-headed and growth-oriented one that lays a strong foundation for an Aatmanirbhar Bharat.
‘The fact that government chose growth over fiscal consolidation is indeed heartening. There is a sharp focus on capital expenditure,’ he said.
CII President Uday Kotak said Sitharaman has delivered on her promise of unveiling a ‘Budget Like No Other’ with a raft of prudent measures aimed at rejuvenating government spending towards critical areas of increasing allocation on infrastructure expansion, education, housing and health as India rolls out a vaccine drive to inoculate 1.3 billion people.
Assocham President Vineet Agarwal said the finance minister has given a booster dose to the economy through six pillars of mega rise in capital expenditure on healthcare, physical infrastructure without putting much pressure on the taxpayers.
Similarly, PHD Chamber President Sanjay Aggarwal said the step is highly encouraging and would go a long way to build a New India.
Stating that the Budget 2021 holds out various positives for the startup sector, Snapdeal Co-Founder and CEO Kunal Bahl said the move towards providing social security benefits for gig workers will add a much-needed safety net that will help this sector grow in a sustainable way and help the many millions that are a part of it.
PepsiCo India President Ahmed ElSheikh said the steps to improve ease of doing business and efforts towards aiding startups, MSME and R&D will drive greater local innovation and value addition, and will eventually push up consumer demand and further the country’s transformation towards a globally competitive economy.
National President of CAIT BC Bhartia said the Union Budget is a comprehensive and progressive economic document which ensures development of each sector in a structured way and providing ease of doing business to traders.