Budget 2020: Nirmala Sitharaman’s sweeping proposals for rural development, health and education

Focus is on an aspirational India

Published - February 01, 2020 12:58 pm IST

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman holds budget papers during a photo opportunity as she leaves her office to present the Budget in the Parliament in New Delhi, India

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman holds budget papers during a photo opportunity as she leaves her office to present the Budget in the Parliament in New Delhi, India

The three prominent themes in Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s second Budget — Union Budget 2020 — are aspirational India, economic development for all and a caring society that is both humane and compassionate.

Under aspirational India, the Finance Minister focussed on rural development; wellness, water, sanitation and education and skills.

Rural development

This sector comprises agriculture, allied activities, irrigation and rural development.

  • About ₹2.83 lakh crore has been allocated
  • ₹1.2 lakh crore for agriculture, allied activities, irrigation
  • ₹1.23 lakh crore for rural development and panchayat raj

Wellness, water and sanitation

Mission Indradhanush and Intensified Mission Indradhanush have helped boost the routine immunisation coverage for 12 diseases with five new vaccines.

  1. The government will launch a campaign to fight non-communicable diseases
  2. Jal Jeevan project for safe drinking water and Swachh Bharat Mission will be further strengthened to reduce diseases in the country
  3. The Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana will be implemented in 1,000 more hospitals
  4. A new Open Defecation Free-plus scheme will be started to sustain the current ODF mission
  5. More schemes will be started for liquid and grey water management, solid waste management and source segmentation of waste
  6. The Finance Minister also proposes to expand Jan Aushadhi Kendra
  7. Health sector allocation - ₹69,000 crore
  8. Allocation for Swachh Bharat Mission - ₹12,300 crore
  9. Minister proposes piped water supply to all households with ₹3.6 lakh crore allocated to Jal Jeevan Mission
  10. ₹11,500 crore has been allocated to encourage augmenting local water, rain water harvesting in cities with over one million population.

Education and skills

  1. By 2030, India will have the highest working age group, putting stress on job and life skills
  2. Along with the State Education Ministries, a new education policy will be announced soon
  3. 150 higher education institutions will start apprenticeship embedded degree and diploma courses by March 2021
  4. The government proposes to start an internship opportunities programme for one year where young engineers can work at urban local bodies
  5. Quality education to deprived section has been proposed. Top 100 institutions offer online programmes - degree level online education
  6. The Finance Minister proposes to change India into a preferred destination for higher education
  7. A new INDSAT exam has been proposed for Asian and African candidates
  8. New National Police University and National Forensic Science and Cyber-forensic University to be set up
  9. As there is shortage of qualified doctors, the Finance Minister has proposed to attach medical colleges to hospitals in PPP mode
  10. Special training packages have been proposed to bridge the gaps in skills requirements
  11. ₹99300 crore for education
  12. ₹3000 crore for skill development
0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.