On February 1, Union Finance and Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will release the Union Budget for the fiscal year 2023–2024. This will be the fifth time that Union Minister Sitharaman has delivered the budget for the fiscal year beginning April 1.
Like the previous two editions, Budget 2023 will also be delivered paperless, and users will have the option of viewing it on the Union Budget website or on the dedicated app, which can be downloaded for free on Google Play and the Apple App Store. The app was launched in 2021 for seamless access to 14 budget-related documents for parliamentarians and the public. It was initially launched to reduce physical contact in Parliament amid the COVID-19 outbreak, though it is also helping to jumpstart the government's Digital India initiative.
The official Union Budget website and app offer the same functionality. However, if you plan to view documents on the phone, the app would be a better option as it is well optimized for small screens. The app also allows users to view budget-related documents from the last two years in an elegant format.
The Union Budget application for Android and iPhone has been developed by the National Information Center (NIC), under the direction of the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA). The same government body publishes and manages apps like Aarogya Setu (COVID-19 tracker), eCourts services, and MyGov. The Union Budget app will publish all 14 budget documents, including the annual financial statement (also known as the budget), the demand for grants (DG), the finance bill and more, after a presentation and a speech from the Finance Secretary.
The application includes additional sections such as the budget key, which basically explains how to read the Union budget. This section explains specific budget terms, such as the annual financial statement, grant application, receipt budget, spending profile, and more. Following Finance Minister Sitharaman's presentation, the app will include a 'Budget Highlights' section that collects major announcements in a friendly format, making it easier for the public to understand the latest developments.
Users can view the full budget speech in a dedicated section, and unsurprisingly, the length of the document varies depending on the speech. In recent years, Finance Minister Sitharaman has gained a reputation for giving long speeches during the Union Budget presentation. Her speech in 2020-21 lasted about 2 hours and 40 minutes. The app only supports English and Hindi.
As mentioned above, Union Budget 2023 can be downloaded for free on the Apple App Store and Google Play, although the official Union Budget website also offers direct download links.
In a recent presentation for the 2022-23 fiscal year, Finance Minister Sitharaman announced the launch of 5G, which was officially launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 1. Currently, major telecommunications companies like Airtel and Jio offer 5G services in many cities for free. This year, the government has high expectations to boost the technology industry in India. The NASSCOM Insights community suggests that the government should consider improving Indian startups and R&D hub.
Also Read: Budget 2023: Government holds 'Halwa' ceremony, marking final stage of Budget preparation