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Union Budget 2024: Thought Leaders and CXOs share their perspectives

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Yesterday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented India’s interim budget amidst a complex economic landscape.

We delve into the post budget reactions from influential figures, examining their perspectives on the implications for businesses, innovation, and the overall economic landscape. From strategic shifts to cautious optimism, the voices of these thought leaders provide a crucial lens through which we can understand the road ahead in a rapidly evolving financial terrain.

Tapan Singhel, MD & CEO, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance

The Union Budget 2024 showcases a balanced approach by the government. The extension of tax breaks for startups until March 2025 and the focus on improving taxpayer services demonstrate the commitment to simplifying taxation. The allocation of interest-free loans to promote tourism and develop tourism in Lakshadweep is a positive step for the industry. The expansion of air connectivity through the successful Udan Scheme, along with fiscal announcements emphasizing infrastructure development, demonstrates the government’s dedication to modernizing transportation and infrastructure.

In agriculture, support for post-harvest investments, dairy farmers, disease control, and crop insurance highlights a commitment to the sector’s growth. Healthcare accessibility is set to improve with the extension of Ayushman Bharat and the plan to establish hospitals in all districts. The budget also prioritizes social security and social inclusion through initiatives that empower women, youth skill development, and renewable energy.

Furthermore, the emphasis on social inclusion ensures that marginalized populations are not left behind, reflecting the government’s dedication to reform, perform, and transform for inclusive growth and development. It addresses various sectors and challenges while emphasizing the welfare of all citizens and the country’s overall progress.

Arundhati Bhattacharya Chairperson & CEO, Salesforce India

India has showcased a robust and resilient growth story driven by perseverance, ingenuity, and vision. The 2024 interim budget is an action-oriented one, with the mantra of reforming, performing and transforming India. It is a budget of confidence. It promises to continue to empower the four vulnerable sections of society- the poor, the youth, farmers and women folk in order to realise India’s potential. The continued focus on increased capital investments will result in generation of employment opportunities and thereby growth of the economy. Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) are an integral part of our economy – locally and globally. As of October 2023, 1.14 lakh startups were recognised by the government under the Startup India initiative and reported the creation of more than 12 lakh jobs. The next-generation reforms focused on timely and adequate finances, relevant technologies and appropriate training for the MSME’s to grow and also compete globally will facilitate sustaining high and more resource-efficient economic growth creating opportunities for all.

India is the talent basket of the world and has one of the youngest populations globally; we have a humongous opportunity to unlock the potential of the country’s young workforce. I am personally pleased with the 43% increase in enrolment of women in STEM courses, the highest in the world. What’s more, our country’s population is massive and tremendously diverse – which gives us access to some of the richest data sets for AI and innovation. India is showcasing multiple solutions through innovation and entrepreneurship of its people. Technology, youth and innovation continues to be the cornerstone of the Government’s strategy. Creation of a corpus of rupees one lakh crore with a fifty-year interest free loan is a welcome move combining the power of our youth and technology for driving more innovation.

Promoting sustainable growth is an opportunity for India to lead and has been a top of mind initiative for all leaders. Bold action towards climate change for realizing our commitment to becoming ‘net-zero’ by 2070 is much needed. We are on a high growth path with all-round development and it is encouraging to see the focus on environment-friendly alternatives 9 roof top solar, offshore wind power generation, mixing of bio fuels with CNG etc)to ensure that such growth is sustainable.

We need more women in the workforce and women-led initiatives are an imperative. Achieving high resilient growth while ensuring sustainable and inclusive livelihood options for all remains a priority for the country. There is emphasis on programs for this segment as well including their health and nutrition. The budget shuns unnecessary populist measures and focuses instead on ensuring that India continues on its high-growth trajectory.

Arun Balasubramanian, VP & MD, India & South Asia, UiPath

We firmly believe that innovation is fundamental to progress. At UiPath, we recognize the critical role of a skilled workforce in advancing Digital India. The introduction of the INR 1 Lakh crore corpus, along with 50-year interest-free loans for the private sector to boost research in sunrise domains, marks a significant stride towards unlocking the potential of innovation. This initiative will provide necessary resources for our tech-savvy youth to smoothly integrate and apply transformative technologies such as AI, automation, and robotics. While commendable progress has been made with the Skill India Mission, it is now crucial to streamline and facilitate demand-driven formal skilling, bridging the gap between academia and industry. With these initiatives, India’s digital evolution holds promise for a bright future.

Kunal Bahl, Co-Founder, Snapdeal and Titan Capital

The vision of “Viksit Bharat 2047” is built on the strong foundations of decisive governance, inspirational leadership and proven track record of delivering digital, physical, social infrastructure. The emphasis on boosting innovation through the low/no interest 50yr loan, expanding capex on infrastructure and adhering to fiscal deficit goals are significant strong points from this Interim Budget.

Rohan Vaidya, Area Vice President, India & SAARC, CyberArk

We commend the Indian government’s foresight and commitment to fortifying our nation’s digital defenses. The substantial increase in allocation for cybersecurity projects, from Rs 400 crore to a robust Rs 750 crore in 2024-2025, is a testament to the recognition of the escalating cyberthreats and the importance of combating them. This additional investment, led by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), is an important step in protecting critical systems. Knowledge and skills will contribute to the success of increasing cybersecurity awareness. As we move forward, CyberArk stands ready to leverage our expertise and technological prowess to contribute meaningfully to the success of the government’s cybersecurity initiatives. Together, we can build a robust defense against cyber adversaries, ensuring the security and integrity of our nation’s digital infrastructure.

Tanu Banerjee, Partner, Khaitan & Co.

Allocation of INR 1 lakh crore for offering long-term financing at low or nil interest will not only be a massive advantage for new-age entrepreneurs but will also immensely boost public-private partnerships in the development and adoption of technology. The government has once again demonstrated its support for the technology sector in line with its principle that innovation is the foundation of development.

Sachin Bhatia, Co-Founder and CGO, Exotel

It’s truly remarkable to see the government’s unwavering dedication to fostering technological innovation, especially with the significant Rs 1 lakh crore allocation for our youth who are passionate about technology. It’s a signal that India is serious about cultivating a vibrant ecosystem of startups and technology giants. The provision of long-term financing and re-financing options at minimal interest rates is akin to planting seeds of opportunity in fertile ground, setting the stage for a future rich in digital advancements and entrepreneurial triumphs.

Additionally, the unveiling of the India Middle East Europe Economic Corridor is a bold stride towards global integration. This isn’t just an economic initiative; it’s a bridge linking India to the heart of global trade and collaboration. The corridor promises to open up new avenues for business, fostering international partnerships that are critical in today’s interconnected world. It’s a forward-thinking move that acknowledges our nation’s capabilities and positions us as a pivotal player on the international stage. Witnessing such strategic initiatives fills me with optimism about India’s role in shaping a future that is not only technologically advanced but also economically integrated and globally connected.

Anil Agarwal, CEO, and Co-Founder of InCruiter

While we appreciate the focus of the Skill India Mission on training and upskilling millions of youths, the emphasis should be on bridging the gap between skilling initiatives and industry needs. Hiring skilled talent for the right opportunities remains a challenge for HR professionals, and a more targeted approach could be the adoption of AI tech-driven HR software to make the process faster and more efficient. Fostering a culture of continuous learning to align skill development with emerging sectors and specific job profiles is crucial. The new institutions of higher learning are commendable, but ensuring quality education and industry exposure is key. We also need to see stronger industry-academia partnerships to equip graduates with the practical skills that businesses demand.

Furthermore, for the startup ecosystem, access to skilled talent can make or break their ventures, and schemes like PM Mudra Yojana and Start-Up India are positive steps for budding entrepreneurs. We stand ready to collaborate with the government and skill development bodies to bridge this gap, ensuring that India’s startup ecosystem can hire skilled talent for the evolving economy

Mayuresh Raut, Co-founder & Managing Partner, Seafund

The scheme for deeptech in defence will not only help the government start addressing the Make in Bharat initiative through indigenous technologies in defence but also unlock these technologies to other civilian uses. Deeptech focused funds like ours will definitely benefit from enabling initiatives like this.

The solar rooftop schemes will be a big boost to not only meet our goals for clean energy, but will also set up India to start addressing the EV charging infrastructure that is currently holding back wider adoption of EVs. It will also create enormous jobs for installation, manufacturing and maintenance of solar infrastructure and a secondary effect will be opportunities available for startups to build on this.

Extension of tax benefits for sovereign wealth funds expiring on 31st March 23 to 31st March 25 is a good signal from the government to indicate that there will be continuation of beneficial policies and friendly institutional investor policies

Dinesh Arjun, Co-founder and CEO, Raptee Energy

Various initiatives announced by the FM today clearly demonstrate the government’s intention to further accelerate EV adoption and also generate significant employment opportunities for the youth. It is encouraging to see the focus on research and innovation to further grow the EV ecosystem. We believe that as the govt rolls out details of the scheme in the coming days for growing the EV public charging infrastructure, the availability of public chargers across the country will significantly grow and EV companies like ours will find higher market acceptance from its consumers and also attract investor interest. This will also break the ‘range anxiety’ , the biggest barrier for EV adoption in our country. The government’s support in providing financial assistance and support to EV manufacturing will encourage entrepreneurs to do deeper innovation in the battery management segment and other technologies. Growth in EV charging infra will also generate employment opportunities for the youth as companies will be on a look out for people with technical know-how of running and maintaining charging infra. EV companies will also enjoy a deeper vendor ecosystem providing battery and other components for building make in India EV vehicles”

Yagnesh Sanjharka, Founder and CFO 100X.VC

Today’s Honorable FM Budget speech left me wanting more for the forthcoming year. While there was a comprehensive recap of past achievements, there was a noticeable absence of concrete measures for startups, founders, and investors. The emphasis on macro measures such as EV adoption in public transport, increased focus on tourism, rooftop solarization, and infrastructure development is appreciated, as it indirectly benefits startups in these sectors. However, there was a missed opportunity to outline specific initiatives and incentives to foster innovation and entrepreneurship. Looking ahead, we hope for a more targeted and supportive approach to fuel the growth of the startup ecosystem in the coming year.”

Sandiip Bhammer, Founder and Co Managing Partner, Green Frontier Capital

Budget 2024 primarily functions as a vote on account, with a strong emphasis on fiscal consolidation and a retrospective focus on the past decade’s progress, rather than unveiling major new budgetary proposals. The fiscal deficit target set at 5.8 percent was surprisingly lower than anticipated, indicating a cautious fiscal approach.

The budget also continued to highlight the government’s commitment to addressing climate change. This was particularly evident in the decision to bolster charging infrastructure, which is expected to generate employment opportunities and accelerate the transition to electric vehicles (EVs). Additionally, the move to provide electricity through rooftop solarization stands out as a dual-benefit initiative. It not only lessens environmental impact but also alleviates financial burdens on households, embodying a model for sustainable development.

Furthermore, the budget’s focus on strengthening the EV ecosystem, through support for charging infrastructure and promotion of electric buses, marks another significant step towards transitioning to a more sustainable EV-based transportation system. These initiatives reflect the government’s ongoing efforts to align with global sustainability goals while maintaining economic stability and continuity

Rishabh Goel, Co-Founder & CEO, Credgenics

The Union Budget 2024 demonstrates a strong focus on generating employment opportunities and driving economic growth to the next level. The key initiatives outlined will promote healthy growth across industry sectors and encourage businesses to innovate. The move to empower startups and tech-savvy youth with a corpus of Rs 1 lakh crore with 50-year interest-free loans is welcome. Furthermore, in a bid to sustain the growth momentum of existing startups, the government has extended tax benefits by an additional year. The announcement of the sanctioning of 43 crore loans under the PM Mudra Yojana, totaling Rs. 22.5 lakh crore, is a noteworthy step. This substantial financial support is expected to fuel the entrepreneurial aspirations of the Indian youth, fostering a culture of innovation and self-reliance. The entrepreneurial community is delighted by the progressive approach and sustained support from the government. As stakeholders, we eagerly anticipate contributing to the ‘Make In India’ initiative, aligning with the vision of creating a ‘Viksit Bharat’ by 2047.”

Sudeep Kulkarni, Founder, Game Theory

In my view, Budget 2024 is all about supporting our young innovators. Setting up a Rs. 1 lakh crore fund with a 50-year interest-free loan is a positive step. It means long-term support for tech-savvy ideas. With this help for startups, our future looks brighter than ever. Embracing the ‘First develop India’ ethos, the government aims to forge bilateral treaties with foreign partners, prioritizing India’s growth. With a development policy centered on social and geographical inclusion, we’re charting a path towards a more equitable and prosperous future for all.

A.R.Ramesh, CEO of TeamLease Degree Apprenticeship

It is heartening to see that new economic opportunities are being created in the technological sector at the global level. The number of GCCs are at a staggering 1580 currently and expected to grow at a scorching pace. Around 4.5 million people are expected to be employed in GCC by 2027 with many cities vying to become regional hubs. It is extremely important that with this growth and demand for workforce, there is availability of right talent with skills specific to the new entrants. Hence upskilling/reskilling becomes a key play.

Companies also need to look at creating sustainable entry level talent who learn skills specific to the roles required. Given that AI is changing the landscape of jobs this becomes even more pronounced. Embracing learning linked apprenticeship programs to skill and bill will be a key strategy to develop these skills and get future ready talent. It is important companies start investing here on a war footing in line with the government schemes.

Girish Rowjee, Co-founder and CEO, greytHR

Envisioning a ‘Viksit Bharat’ by 2047, the Union Budget 2024 reflects the steadfast dedication to ‘sabka sath, sabka vikas.’ The introduction of a 1-lakh crore corpus with a 50-year interest-free period to catalyze private sector research and development marks a groundbreaking move. This significant investment is set to drive innovation and technological progress, especially in emerging fields, by relieving the financial burden of high interest rates. By encouraging businesses to undertake prolonged research projects, it nurtures a culture of ongoing advancement. The resolute commitment to Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) is evident in the emphasis on providing training for global competitiveness. This equips MSMEs with essential skills, strengthening the economic backbone, contributing to job creation, and enhancing economic resilience. Beyond the financial aspects, this budget symbolizes the collective effort to shape a resilient and future-ready India

Bimal Khandelwal, Chief Financial Officer, STT GDC India

The Union Budget 2024-25 presents encouraging prospects for the technology and digital infrastructure sector. The substantial increase in FDI inflow and the commitment to negotiating bilateral investment treaties signal a favourable environment for sustained foreign investment, aligning with the digital aspirations of the nation.

The noteworthy outlay of Rs 11.11 lakh crores for infrastructure development, with a focus on technology, is a promising move. This budget holds the potential to positively impact the data centre industry, fostering innovation and growth. The emphasis on technology, innovation, and infrastructure aligns seamlessly with the evolving needs of the data centre sector, and we anticipate contributing significantly to India’s digital journey.”

Manoj Nair, Head of India GDC, Fujitsu India

We welcome India’s Union Budget 2024-25 unveiled today and applaud the Indian Government for putting digitalization, inclusive and sustainable development, and enhanced capabilities and contribution to the generation of resources to power investments at the core. As the demand for tech talent surges, the Government’s Skill India Mission has played a pivotal role in stemming the talent gap in the IT industry. With 1.4 crore youth upskilled and reskilled the announcement of higher learning institutions including IITs and IIMs will help India address the AI skill crunch and bridge the gap effectively. Additionally, the Government’s corpus of Rs 1 lakh crore with a 50-year interest-free loan will encourage the private sector to scale up research and innovation significantly in sunrise domains. This will be a big boost for tech-savvy youth and help the Nation strengthen capabilities in the deep tech sector. The government’s continued focus on EV ecosystem is indeed a pragmatic step forward and will continue to help India succeed in achieving its long-term decarbonization objectives. This is an exciting time for the country’s green industrial and economic transition. At Fujitsu, we are committed to providing sustainable transformation and supporting green growth and we shall continue as strong partners in helping the nation in its journey towards net-zero

Alekh Sanghera, Co-founder and CEO, FarMart

’Budget 2024-2025 is a great step towards a promising and bountiful agritech future. The budget provisions strengthening agriculture value chains through food processing infrastructure, minimized wastage and crop insurance.

We, at FarMart, echo the vision of PMKSY & PM-FME, bridging the farm-to-fork gap. Better market access and post-harvest management empower smallholders with sustainable income. We are aligned with the government’s vision to boost productivity and farmer welfare through incentives around credit access, infrastructure, and public-private collaboration. This budget fuels India’s agritech ecosystem, ensuring local and global food security.”

Ravi Kunwar, Vice President – India & APAC at HMD Global (The Home of Nokia Phones)

The Interim Budget is forward-looking and represents the remarkable evolution of India’s mobile and telecom landscape in the last decade, standing true to our expectations. The allocation towards the development of electronics manufacturing clusters unlocks the accessibility of high-quality technology for varied consumers, including those at the bottom of the pyramid. Additionally, the proposal to further provide relief in customs duty on the import of battery covers, main lenses, back covers, and mechanical items will boost the Make in India initiation and solidify the mobile manufacturing ecosystem in the country.

This reduction, coupled with the establishment of a one-lakh-crore corpus supported by a fifty-year interest-free loan, will empower the private sector to significantly advance research and innovation in sunrise domains. Despite the industry’s growth, there is substantial room for expansion in India, and we are optimistic that supportive government policies, infrastructure investments, and a vibrant innovation ecosystem will unleash the next wave of digital transformation.

Sameer Aggarwal CEO and Founder at Revfin

The vote-on-account the interim budget presented by the Honorable Finance Minister, signals towards a transformative era for the nation. The commitment to fortify the Electric Vehicle (EV) ecosystem and support manufacturing and charging infrastructure aligns with global environmental goals, positioning India as a leader in widespread sustainable mobility adoption. Continued focus on the rural economy support, youth skill development, and gender-inclusive initiatives reflects a holistic approach toward inclusive and sustainable growth. Skill India Mission’s success in training 1.4 crore youth strengthens the workforce for evolving job demands.

Varun Tangri CEO and founder at QueueBuster POS

With an injection of 11 Lakh crore and the PM GatiShakti project, we witness a strategic push for economic corridors, opening doors for three new corridors that will strengthen and expand organised retail in newer cities. Acknowledging the retail sector’s key role in India’s economy, the budget commits to launching new retail destinations, aligning seamlessly with our vision. Globally, our country has secured its place as the fourth-largest retail destination, driven by a surge in demand for lifestyle products. As India targets the third-largest consumer market by 2030, strategic investments in infrastructure promise substantial growth. In a noteworthy move, the budget raises the presumptive taxation threshold for retail businesses to Rs 3 crore, offering valuable support to SMEs in the sector. These initiatives will surely be instrumental in positioning India as the world's largest retail destination in the coming decades

Siddhartha Tipnis, Partner and Technology Sector Leader, Deloitte India

India has traditionally been one of the largest importers of defence equipment and technology globally. The Government has been pushing for greater indigenisation in defence manufacture and technology for a while. Honourable Finance Minister’s announcement on strengthening deep technology investments for defence purposes translates really this aspiration to action. This significant scheme is expected to harness a lot innovation from the Indian startup community and propel research and development in this space.

Hemant Krishna, Partner, Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co.

By nature, deep-tech defence start-ups are R&D focused and need patient capital. The growth cycles of these companies are misaligned with the mainstream financing options currently on offer. Therefore, this announcement will certainly boost the sentiment in this sector. Capital outlay and the right kind of support for this sector now will lighten our massive defence import bills 7-8 years from now. Equally important though is a clear path for these start-ups to integrate with our defence supply chain. Indigenisation in defence is a long game, but one that is worth playing.

Tapan Barman, Co-Founder & CEO, Mihup

As a technology entrepreneur, I find the interim budget presented by the Finance Minister of India today to be a source of both excitement and anticipation. The budget’s focus on digital infrastructure and innovation is a positive development, signaling the government’s acknowledgment of technology as a crucial catalyst for economic growth. The allocation for improving digital connectivity, particularly in rural areas, is commendable and expands the market for tech businesses and startups, creating opportunities for innovation among a more diverse user base.

However, the budget lacks specific incentives for the burgeoning startup ecosystem, such as tax reliefs or funding for early-stage tech startups. This represents a missed opportunity to boost the morale and stability of startups, especially in a challenging economic environment. Additionally, it would have been beneficial if the budget directly addressed issues like ease of doing business and regulatory challenges, which often consume considerable time and resources for entrepreneurs. Yet, as highlighted by Anand Mahindra, budgets may not be the ideal platform for major policy innovations. We remain confident that numerous changes will unfold throughout the year

Varun Babbar, MD India and SAARC for Qlik

The 2024 budget announcement signals a strategic focus on propelling the economy toward sustained growth. The government’s dedication to fostering growth, enhancing productivity, and creating employment opportunities aligns seamlessly with Qlik’s commitment to empowering businesses with transformative data solutions, including cutting-edge AI and ML applications.

The emphasis on transformative reforms via NEP 2020 and the Skill India Mission, particularly in crucial tech and AI segments, highlights the immediate need for upskilling and reskilling – essential pillars where Qlik’s innovative data analytics, data literacy, augmented by AI and ML, play a pivotal role. The allocation of Rs. 1 lakh crore for Research and Innovation, coupled with interest-free loans, underscores the crucial role of the private sector.

Furthermore, the forward-looking initiatives supporting shore-wind energy demonstrate a commitment to technological advancement and resonate with Qlik’s vision for sustainability and impactful innovation.

Prem Kumar Vislawath, Founder and CEO, Marut Drones

It’s reassuring to hear the honorable FM prioritize agriculture as a key area of focus in her budget speech. She stressed on the push for widespread adoption of modern farming techniques. The FM also mentioned empowerment of ‘Annadatas’, our farmers, as an important goal. Agricultural drones can play a crucial role in minimizing risks while maximizing revenue for our farmers. The introduction of Nano DAP class of fertilizers in all agro-climactic zones FM mentioned is also exciting for us, as Marut drones are specially equipped for that. Farmer-centric policies with the government encouraging embrace of modern technology through start-ups will go a long way in helping rural parts of the country grow to their full potential.

Radhika Choudary, Co-Founder, Freyr Energy

The Budget 2024 has unveiled the Vision for Vikasit Bharat, emphasizing a harmonious relationship with nature. The government is actively promoting inclusive sustainable development through initiatives such as rooftop solar, as outlined in the Finance Minister’s speech. Anticipating new guidelines and incentives under the ‘Pradhan Mantri Suryodaya Yojana,’ the industry is optimistic about India’s rooftop solar energy transition.

The commitment to rooftop solarization and providing free electricity to one crore households is expected to infuse competitiveness and innovation into the solar sector. With the potential to contribute significantly to achieving the government’s target of making India net zero by 2070, this boost is poised to generate employment opportunities for the youth engaged in manufacturing, installation, and maintenance within the solar industry. The interim budget has successfully unlocked the true economic potential of India’s rooftop sector.

Karun Tadepalli – CEO and Co-Founder, byteXL

We commend the government’s efforts in improving the education sector under the National Education Policy. This forward-thinking approach has led to increase in the female enrollment in higher education by 28 percent and in the STEM courses by 43 percent. As the government is also aiming to promote medical education with new medical colleges, they might bring in more enrollments from the female candidates.

It is encouraging to see that under the Skill India Mission, the government has trained more than 1.4 cr people and 54 lac more are undergoing the upskilling and reskilling programs. This will not only help in the overall technological knowledge growth of the country but also will lead to key innovations and developments. This will assist in increasing the digital literacy and help in reducing the digital divide

Binu Jacob – MD and CEO, Experion Technologies

As we assess the Union Budget for 2024, it’s crucial to acknowledge certain aspects that merit attention. While the government’s recognition of the importance of education and skill development in the youth is commendable, sustaining and expanding these efforts is imperative, especially considering the prediction that 20% of the global labor force will be supplied by India by 2047. The continuation of educational investments is a necessary step, and we hope to see tangible outcomes.

The expansion of airports and railway corridors, particularly in tier II and III cities, has potential benefits for accelerating the growth of Global Capacity Centres in states like Kerala. However, the impact of such infrastructure initiatives needs to be monitored closely, considering the challenges associated with execution and long-term sustainability.

The promise of interest-free loans for research and development in sunrise sectors is a positive note. It holds the potential to stimulate innovation and drive the startup ecosystem – I am particularly excited to see how the youth will make use of this opportunity to set up and grow startups in emerging tech like AI. Yet, the execution and accessibility of these opportunities will be critical in determining their actual impact on the ground.

The focus on ensuring the welfare of farmers and the agriculture sector is a step in the right direction. It remains to be seen how effectively these measures will address the complex challenges faced by the agricultural sector and whether they will lead to tangible improvements for farmers – what would make a real difference is bringing about policy changes that will enable the export of our produce. Export controls need to be unblocked and we need to work on an inter-governmental level to have our produce accepted internationally.

In our march to becoming a 7 trillion dollar economy by 2030, we need to focus on continuance in policies for infrastructure development, which will in turn improve supply chains and thereby lower costs for global competency”

Asish Saraf, VP and Country Director, Thales – India

We welcome the Research and Innovation focused steps outlined in the Budget. The allocation of INR one-lakh crore corpus, backed by a fifty-year interest-free loan, is a game-changer. As underscored, this will provide long-term financial support, offering low or nil interest rates to catalyse private sector participation in research and innovation across sunrise domains. This golden era for our tech-savvy youth will undoubtedly spur breakthroughs and drive progress. For Thales, R&D is collaborative by definition, and we work hand-in-hand with start-ups, industry partners and the academic research community to provide our customers with the most advanced solutions possible. We look forward to leveraging our global tech expertise, continue with our R&T efforts in India, and support in fostering the innovation ecosystem in the country collectively with the local teams, talent and industry.

An Interim Budget Focused on Driving Growth: nasscom

Strengthening the collective vision for an Inclusive Digital India, the Interim Budget 2024 has set the tone for a technology-oriented and knowledge-driven nation by 2047. The government’s sharp focus on DeepTech, technology-enabled development to benefit the last mile, Innovation R&D and transformational reforms to skill, reskill and upskill India’s youth reflects the country’s commitment towards inclusive and sustained development for all.

Echoing the vision for India’s techade the budget encouraged the use of emerging technologies benefiting and readying India. DeepTech today holds the potential to generate substantial economic value across various emerging and legacy sectors. India today has a large resource of DeepTech start-ups working across the entire range of emerging technologies, driving innovation and inclusive development. Therefore, it is welcoming to see the government’s focus on promoting Deep Technologies in critical sectors such as Defence.

Access to quality skilled talent has been India’s biggest competitive advantage globally. India today has the highest STEM enrolment of girls globally at 43%. The Interim budget 2024 introduced several key measures ranging from women entrepreneurship and increasing women’s participation in the workforce. We are also glad to see the government focused on digital skilling to encourage continual skilling avenues for the country’s youth. This further strengthens the tech industry’s commitment to skill development at scale in this AI age. With a focus on innovation as the foundation for development, the allotment of INR 1 Lakh Crore corpus with 50-year interest-free loans will provide long-term financing at low or nil interest rates for the private sector to not just scale R&D in sunrise sectors but also boost employment and economic prosperity for the country.

The budget’s continued focus on a green budget that prioritizes sustainable development through Green Growth, has sent a very strong signal of India’s commitment towards achieving net zero goals and energy transition. Expansion & strengthening the EV infrastructure by supported manufacturing and charging infrastructure will vastly strengthen this commitment further.

Overall, we believe this was a healthy interim budget with a focus on growth driving growth. As is usually the convention in interim budgets, there are no changes expected in the taxation regime.

Nasscom will continue to work with the government to enable ease of doing business and promote innovation for the larger technology ecosystem including start-ups, to augment the India growth story in this Techade.

Naveen Tewari, Founder & CEO, InMobi Group.

We commend the government for its forward-looking budget, especially the emphasis on research and innovation, infrastructure development, and the support for sustainable technology. The allocation of a one lakh crore corpus for long-term financing in innovation is a significant step, aligning with our commitment to developing cutting-edge technologies in India through InMobi and Glance, the world’s leading smart lock screen platform. With the introduction of 50-yr interest-free loans, it is indeed the golden era for tech-savvy youth.

This has laid down the foundation for more targeted measures for consumer-tech, semicon design and production, quantum computing and emerging technologies like AI, especially its development and research for future budgets. Almost midway through India’s Techade, we are excited to see the continued focus on infrastructure development and increased focus on research and innovation through forward looking schemes like PLI, NEP and skilling initiatives reaching critical mass. This is certainly India’s statement of intent, announcing itself as the new and upcoming leader of manufacturing and innovation in the world. The next step has to be creating software in India, for the world and with Glance, we have already put it in motion. This budget has definitely set us on the path for continual growth and development – the pursuit of ‘Viksit Bharat’ – as we look to become the third largest economy in the world in the next 5 years.

Lasmikant Thipse, Founder & CEO, GameCloud Technologies 

We are pleased with the Union Budget 2024, which has taken several steps to support the gaming industry and promote innovation and creativity in the sector. The government has announced a ₹5.54 lakh crore stimulus package, which will create more opportunities for growth and employment in the gaming sector. The government has also proposed to introduce a duty credit script of 10% for export-oriented gaming companies, which will help them access global markets and compete with international players. The government has also allocated ₹500 crore for the development of a National Gaming Centre, which will provide state-of-the-art facilities and infrastructure for game developers and esports organisers.

The government has also extended the tax holiday and capital gains exemption for startups by one more year, which will encourage more entrepreneurship and innovation in the gaming space. We at Gamecloud are committed to providing our clients with the best video game testing and quality assurance services, and we are confident that the budget will create a conducive environment for us to achieve our vision of contributing to the success of game studios globally.”- Mr. Laxmikanth Thipse, Founder & CEO, GameCloud Technology .

Dr. Ananthakrishnan Gopal, Co-Founder & CTO at DaveAI

With investment funding drying up, the requirement for impetus from the government on R&D is very important. “Announcing a 1 lakh-crore funding with close to zero interest and long-term financing is a fantastic impetus for start-ups working on cutting-edge technology. The hope is that this investment is done in a methodical and outcome-driven manner to fund real start-ups instead of shell-companies, and tie future funding to tangible outcomes

Sriram PH, Co-Founder & CEO at DaveAI

Stable governance and policies are indications of a strong economy and I believe this year’s budget reflects that. The positives for the startup ecosystem is the extension of tax benefits by another year. While the expectation was more firm outcome-driven measures, this is a good step. The emphasis on leveraging deep technology and interest-free funds for research & innovation will certainly help deep technology startups in the country

Ankit Kumar, CEO of Skye Air Mobility

The India Budget 2024 heralds a powerful catalyst for our nation’s economic advancement. By extending concessional tax rates for new manufacturing units, fostering innovation receives a significant impetus. The strategic emphasis on training for MSMEs not only enhances competitiveness but also nurtures a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem, propelling Bharat towards global leadership. The unwavering commitment to realizing a ‘Vikshit Bharat’ by 2047, coupled with the remarkable success of the Skill India Mission in elevating average income by 50%, underscores the profound impact of these initiatives on the nation’s growth trajectory. This budget’s unwavering focus on growth, inclusivity, and productivity not only aligns with our aspirations but also lays the groundwork for a flourishing Indian economy, poised to seize opportunities and surmount challenges on the global stage

Saurabh Rai, CEO, ARAHAS Technologies

The Indian Government’s forward-looking Interim Budget for FY 2024-25 marks a transformative moment, aligning perfectly with mission and values. The introduction of ‘Kartavya Kaal’—a call to duty for the private sector to significantly boost research and innovation—resonates deeply with our ethos. We’re poised to lead in pioneering sustainable solutions across sunrise sectors, leveraging this budget as a springboard towards a greener, more innovative India. This budget not only fosters a circular economy and sustainable development but also emphasizes India’s role on the global stage through initiatives like the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor. It’s a clarion call for us to harness technology and innovation, ensuring India’s vibrant future. We’re committed to contributing to ‘Innovation India,’ driving transformative changes that will benefit our society and economy.

Pooja Thakran, Senior Director – Corporate Communications and CSR, Honeywell India.

Interim Budget 2024 stands as a testament to the government’s dedicated focus on promoting rural agronomy, bolstering youth employability and fostering women empowerment, especially across the rural belts. The budget acknowledges the need for critical interventions in youth upskilling and this is reflected in the success of the Skill India. Moreover, the surge in female enrolment in higher education and in STEM courses is indicative of the positive transition in India’s gender parity. Much of this success is also attributed to the growing synergies between the government, the development sector and corporate India, specially by promoting upskilling and sustainability interventions through CSR.

For example, we, at Honeywell Hometown Solutions India Foundation have sponsored STEM education for girls and upskilling programs for underserved youth. Moreover, we provide financial impetus to start-ups in the deep science. The Interim Budget’s allocation of 1 lakh crore to scale up research and innovation in sunrise sectors (hydrogen fuel production, petrochemical industry) is a great move and aligns with Honeywell’s business priorities and our social impact agenda. We are optimistic that this will contribute to India’s $5 trillion economic vision.

Jaya Vaidhyanathan, CEO, BCT Digital

The budget presented was on expected lines. Being a vote-on-account, there were no major announcements, but at the same time it provided a clear overview of India’s economic trajectory and the government’s dedication to development through targeted schemes.

Revenue receipts for the year exceeding budget estimates, robust growth in GST collections, and a fiscal deficit at 5.8% of GDP – lower than anticipated – all indicate robust economic growth. This is bolstered by the formalization of the economy, which will have a positive impact on the banking system that lends to the formal economy. Further, despite the huge amount of welfare measures in place, the strong revenue figures have kept the fiscal deficit in check – estd at 5.1% in FY25 and on track for 4.5% by FY26 .

Significant capital expenditure growth of over 11% this year, accounting for 3.4% of GDP, underlines the focus on key areas like railway infrastructure and green energy. This is expected to transform the country while also ensuring employment generation to harness demographic dividend. Specific steps like viability gap funding and other financial assistance to achieve net zero by 2070 are expected to catalyze new industries and enable cleantech players to transform the landscape through innovative tech solutions. Overall, the budget aligns with India’s path towards sustainable growth and development, balancing welfare measures with economic expansion.

Hitesh Garg, Vice President, and India Managing Director, NXP Semiconductors

Union Budget 2024 delivers a resounding commitment to sustainable tech, spotlighting support for EVs and bio manufacturing. Metro Rail and Namo Bharat projects elevate city connectivity, while the dual focus on public transport and defence tech reveals a visionary agenda.

The game-changing move of a Rs 1 lakh crore corpus for our tech-savvy youth, coupled with a 50-year interest-free loan, sets the stage for long-term financing, propelling research and innovation. This bold step positions India for a golden era in technology and innovation.

Aligned with our pre-budget expectations, the government’s emphasis on fostering a conducive environment for research and development perfectly mirrors the semiconductor industry’s trajectory. The collaborative spirit and proposed incentives position India as a global semiconductor hub, solidifying its commitment to cutting-edge technological advancements. Budget 2024 charts the course for India’s robust future in sustainable tech and innovation

Roland Landers, CEO, All India Gaming Federation

Today’s interim budget announcement may not have directly addressed the needs of the gaming industry, however the clear focus on technology and the youth is one that we deeply appreciate. We believe that the announcement proposing long term financing for the sunrise sectors to scale up on research and innovation will be beneficial for the technology and startup sector as a whole including the gaming and game-development sub-sectors. We are hopeful for more concrete and decisive measures addressing the online gaming industry in the upcoming Union Budget.

We urge progressive budgeting to empower responsible online gaming, aligning with AVGC policies and fostering self-regulation, as recommended by the I&B Ministry’s AVGC Task Force. This will unlock industry potential and benefit the economy, players, and creators.

As the apex industry body, we are committed to working with policymakers to create an enabling environment for the gaming sector’s growth and innovation. Our industry has immense potential, and we look forward to constructive policies that will drive its development in the union budget.

Amit Khatri, Co-Founder, Noise

The Interim Union Budget 2024 presented by FM Nirmala Sitharaman reflects the Government’s undeterred focus on inclusive growth. The focus on boosting employability through training and skill development, along with the significant support to foster the entrepreneurial spirit of Indian youth through 43 crore loans amounting to Rs. 22.5 lakh, is indeed a commendable step towards pushing India’s growth at a global stage. These reforms encourage us to work towards India’s vision to become a developed nation by 2047 through enhanced capability and empowerment.

Being a homegrown brand, we believe that initiatives like PM Mudra Yojana & Start Up India will play a crucial role in catalyzing the growth of the startup ecosystem in India and eventually further strengthen the ‘Make in India’ efforts. We appreciate the economic policies adopted to foster growth, improve productivity, increase opportunity, and fulfill aspirations through strategic technological advancements. Driven by the vision of Vikasit and Aatmanirbhar Bharat, we look forward to actively participating in the nation’s journey towards global prominence and innovation leadership.

Peeyush Vaish, Partner and TMT Industry Leader, Deloitte India

The large interest free outlay will further boost our tech start up ecosystem in emerging areas around 5G, generative AI, Agritech and health tech. The 1-lakh crore corpus that will be made available with 50-year interest-free (long-term financing or refinancing) to encourage the private sector to scale up R&D in Sunrise domain is a welcome move for the sector. This will push India to be on the forefront of innovation and skill enhancement.

Ankur Bansal, Co-Founder & Director, BlackSoil Capital

The FM’s interim budget announcement on deep-tech aligns with our expectations. The Government had earlier identified vital focus sectors, which included deep-tech; thus, a progressive announcement around the sector was anticipated. Besides EVs, renewables, agritech, deep-tech is now widely used in defence and surveillance. The proposed scheme focused on deep-tech defence technologies will not only ignite innovation and bolster national security but also provide a fertile ground for startups to thrive. Further, this will encourage entrepreneurship, augmented by the announcement of establishing a Rs 1tn corpus with a 50-year interest-free (or low) loan for long-term financing for research and innovation in sunrise areas. In addition, such initiatives by the Government will attract investment from the private sector and foreign investors, driving growth and propelling India towards self-reliance – ‘atmanirbharta’

Bimal Khandelwal, Chief Financial Officer, STT GDC India

“The Union Budget 2024-25 presents encouraging prospects for the technology and digital infrastructure sector. The substantial increase in FDI inflow and the commitment to negotiating bilateral investment treaties signal a favourable environment for sustained foreign investment, aligning with the digital aspirations of the nation.

The noteworthy outlay of Rs 11.11 lakh crores for infrastructure development, with a focus on technology, is a promising move. This budget holds the potential to positively impact the data centre industry, fostering innovation and growth. The emphasis on technology, innovation, and infrastructure aligns seamlessly with the evolving needs of the data centre sector, and we anticipate contributing significantly to India’s digital journey.”

Manoj Nair, Head of India GDC, Fujitsu India

We welcome India’s Union Budget 2024-25 unveiled today and applaud the Indian Government for putting digitalization, inclusive and sustainable development, and enhanced capabilities and contribution to the generation of resources to power investments at the core. As the demand for tech talent surges, the Government’s Skill India Mission has played a pivotal role in stemming the talent gap in the IT industry. With 1.4 crore youth upskilled and reskilled the announcement of higher learning institutions including IITs and IIMs will help India address the AI skill crunch and bridge the gap effectively. Additionally, the Government’s corpus of Rs 1 lakh crore with a 50-year interest-free loan will encourage the private sector to scale up research and innovation significantly in sunrise domains. This will be a big boost for tech-savvy youth and help the Nation strengthen capabilities in the deep tech sector. The government’s continued focus on EV ecosystem is indeed a pragmatic step forward and will continue to help India succeed in achieving its long-term decarbonization objectives. This is an exciting time for the country’s green industrial and economic transition. At Fujitsu, we are committed to providing sustainable transformation and supporting green growth and we shall continue as strong partners in helping the nation in its journey towards net-zero!”

Deepa Seshadri, Partner, Deloitte India

With the unprecedented speed at which technologies are progressing, a well-defined legal framework is essential for encouraging responsible growth and building confidence. In this regard, the recently introduced National Deep Tech Startup Policy (NDTSP) acts as a roadmap for building a supportive ecosystem for start-ups. Moreover, in the interim Budget 2024-25, the Union Minister has announced to launch a new scheme for strengthening deep-tech technologies for defense, which will further promote the growth of indigenous manufacturing in the country.

Neeraj Bansal, Co-Head & COO – India Global, KPMG in India

Budget 2024 has underlined once more the continuity in this government’s economic policies with a sharpened approach towards accelerating the Indian economy through capital expenditure spending, green growth, digital infrastructure and innovation. Given the government’s vision of Amrit Kal, development and innovation are justifiable cornerstones of budget declarations. The budget’s increase in capital investment outlay for the fourth time in a row—up by 11.1 per cent to a total allocation of INR11.11 lakh crore—will sustain the momentum the Indian economy is currently enjoying, stimulating private capital expenditure, driving economic growth and increasing consumption. Further emphasising efficient logistical development under the PM Gati Shakti initiative, three major railway corridors have been announced, which are expected to significantly enhance India’s supply chain ecosystem. The fiscal deficit in 2024–25 is estimated to be 5.1 per cent of the GDP, which is expected to be reduced further below 4.5 per cent by 2025–26, thereby revitalising the economy further.

The budget’s focus on research and innovation—with a corpus of INR1 lakh crore with a 50-year interest free loan—is a significant move given India’s aspirations of being a USD5–7 trillion economy by 2030. Further, the emphasis on green energy, announcement of rooftop solarisation and the fostering of the EV ecosystem underline the government’s priority on sustainability.

Affordable housing continues to remain a priority. The PM Awas Yojana Gramin has had a good performance despite the disruptions due to the pandemic. While 3 crores houses have already been built, the FM announced an additional 2 crore more houses to be taken up in the next five years under this scheme. Further, the announcement of financial aid to middle classes living in rented houses, slums or unauthorised colonies to buy or build their own houses is a welcome move as ‘housing for all’ is a significant marker of economic progress and a developed country

Jose Thattil, CEO, PhiCommerce

We applaud the government’s initiative to establish a Rs 1 lakh crore fund to fuel technological innovation among our youth. This visionary step, offering long-term, interest-free financing, is a game-changer and the fintech sector alone can potentially get elevated to USD 1 trillion by 2030. For digital payments in particular, this will mean many more young entrepreneurs eager to innovate especially in the hardware terminal space will enter the industry and potentially transform payment solutions across India. This fund is not just an investment in technology; it’s an investment in India’s innovative spirit and global leadership in fintech.

Sachin Panicker, Chief AI Officer, Fulcrum Digital

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s sixth consecutive budget presentation sets a decisive course for India’s future, rooted in the vision of ‘Viksit Bharat’ by 2047. The government’s emphasis on GDP – Governance, Development, and Performance, lays a sturdy framework for sustainable growth. With a focus on empowering youth and fostering innovation, the budget outlines a roadmap for unprecedented development over the next five years.

In addition, initiatives like the Skill India Mission, training, upskilling and reskilling 1.4 crore youth and establishing new educational institutions, reflect a commitment to human capital development and digital empowerment.

At Fulcrum Digital, we stand ready to leverage deep technology and the power of our youth to continue to create opportunities for India at a global level. As a global enterprise AI organization, we are committed to contributing to India’s growth story, and fostering innovation for heightened development.

Puneet Gupta, Vice President & Managing Director, NetApp India/SAARC

The Interim Union Budget 2024 focuses on data-driven innovation, and this gives us much to look forward to. The Honourable Finance Minister has acknowledged the potential of deep technologies like AI in transforming varied industry sectors. In addition, the GoI’s focus on training, upskilling, and reskilling the youth of the nation through the Skill India mission is likely to place India well on the global map of tech-savvy nations. With India’s tech prowess growing, we expect the need for unified storage and intelligent data infrastructures to grow as well. Harnessing the power of data will be a key growth driver and differentiator for businesses across sectors. At NetApp, we are aligned with the government’s focus, with innovation in data management being at the heart of everything we do. Combined with the capabilities of our tech talent, particularly the youth, we are well poised to contributing towards building a ‘Viksit Bharat’ by 2047.”

Debashis Chatterjee, MD & CEO, LTIMindtree

We welcome the interim budget’s focus on skilling, deeptech, R&D, innovation, and digital infrastructure, all of which are critical drivers for the IT industry’s growth. The Skill India Mission has helped in building a highly skilled workforce, and the Rs. 1 lakh crore corpus with interest-free loans for tech-savvy youth will be a true game-changer. This will fuel innovation and entrepreneurship, fostering the next generation of tech leaders. As we strive towards achieving the goal of “Viksit Bharat” by 2047, LTIMindtree stands committed to partnering with the government in its digital transformation journey. We believe this interim budget has laid a strong foundation for continued growth, with technology playing a pivotal role in shaping India’s future.”

Sunil Sharma, Vice President- Sales, Sophos India & SAARC

We at Sophos are in complete alignment with the vision presented by the Honorable Finance Minister in the Interim Union Budget 2024, towards creating a prosperous and inclusive India. The highlighted emphasis on skill development, technology-driven innovation, and sustainable infrastructure resonates with our organizational mission, focused on empowering Indian businesses through state-of-the-art cybersecurity solutions. The government’s steadfast commitment to increasing the cybersecurity budget from INR 400 crores to INR 750 crores within a year is a noteworthy development within the industry, and promises to address cybersecurity threats that may endanger the rapidly digitizing nation.

The intersection of democracy, demography, and diversity, encapsulated by the ideology of “Sabka Prayas,” emerges as the key force that will unlock India’s true potential in the technology sector. Other significant initiatives such as the allocation of a substantial amount of Rs 1 lakh crore for tech startups and the strategic emphasis on deep-tech for defense, underscore the government’s dedication towards realizing its Atmanirbhar Bharat vision.

Within this transformative landscape, Sophos remains unwavering in its commitment to playing a constructive role in realizing the vision of a cyber-secure India. Our dedication extends to equipping businesses with resilient cybersecurity solutions and nurturing a culture of cyber awareness, thereby contributing to the empowerment of citizens and the assurance of our digital future.

Pinkesh Kotecha, MD & Chairman, Ishan Technologies

We hope you’d be able to use the same. Please feel free to reach out should you need anything further.

While the Interim Budget provides a wide overview of FY24-25, we applaud the government’s emphasis on empowering the youth through upskilling and reskilling initiatives. The establishment of additional IITs, IIITs, and IIMs is a promising stride toward creating a skilled talent pool in the IT sector, addressing a critical need in the industry especially in the era of Artificial Intelligence.

As an MSME in the IT sector, Ishan Technologies appreciates the government’s recognition of the importance of timely finances, relevant technologies, and training for the growth and global competitiveness of MSMEs. The orientation of the regulatory environment to facilitate the growth of MSMEs is a crucial element of the policy mix, and we look forward to the positive impact it will have on the MSME ecosystem.

As we look forward to the budget announcement in July, we anticipate a focused commitment to bolstering cybersecurity measures. We believe that additional allocation and specific policies in this crucial area will play a pivotal role in fortifying India’s digital infrastructure and enhancing overall cybersecurity, aligning with the nation’s vision for a secure and resilient digital future.”

Madhusudan Ekambaram, Co-founder and CEO of KreditBee

I applaud the government’s steadfast commitment to fostering comprehensive and inclusive development. Initiatives such as PM Mudra Yojana, Fund of Funds, Startup India, and Startup Credit Guarantee Schemes are effectively nurturing the entrepreneurial spirit nationwide. It is truly inspiring to witness a visionary approach that extends beyond mere economic growth, with a goal to transform India into a Viksit Bharat by 2047. The proposed measures, including tax reductions, specialized support for developing industries, and augmented infrastructure spending in the forthcoming Budget 2024, are encouraging signs for the future, reflecting a collective endeavor towards sustainability, growth, and innovation within India’s dynamic startup ecosystem.

The reinforcement of the financial sector has significantly enhanced the efficiency of savings, credit, and investments. Ensuring timely and ample financial support, leveraging relevant technologies, and providing appropriate training for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) are pivotal policy priorities for the government. This strategy aims not only to foster their growth but also to enhance their global competitiveness. Aligning the regulatory environment to facilitate the expansion of MSMEs will be a crucial aspect of this comprehensive policy framework.

Amit Patjoshi, CEO, Palladium India

We commend the government’s strong commitment to the agricultural sector evident in the Budget. The focus on value addition and income augmentation for farmers is pivotal, and the success of initiatives like Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana, benefiting 38 lakh farmers, is truly commendable. The support extended through Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Yojana, assisting 2.4 lakh SHGs and 60 thousand individuals, reflects a holistic approach towards empowering the agricultural community. The emphasis on reducing postharvest losses and enhancing productivity aligns with the sector’s long-term sustainability. Furthermore, the launch of schemes promoting climate-resilient activities for the blue economy 2.0 is a forward-looking step. This integrated and multi-sectoral approach for coastal aquaculture and mariculture, coupled with restoration and adaptation measures, holds promise for sustainable growth. Overall, this budget signals a positive trajectory for the agricultural sector, laying the foundation for a more resilient and prosperous future.

Nikhil Goyal, CEO & Founder, Beyond Imagination Technologies & BitMemoir

“The Union Budget 2023-24 has set the stage for a transformative era, particularly laudable in its focus on empowering the youth and fostering sustainability. By earmarking a significant corpus of one lakh crore with a fifty-year interest-free loan, the government is not only acknowledging the potential of our youth but also fostering entrepreneurship opportunities on an unprecedented scale, with a keen eye on sustainability practices.

This budget paves the way for a golden era for our tech-savvy youth, offering employment avenues in manufacturing, installation, and maintenance, while also emphasizing the importance of sustainable practices. The commitment to deep-tech technology for defense purposes reflects a strategic vision towards self-reliance (atmanirbharta), aligning with the broader goal of Jai Jawan Jai Kisan Jai Vigyan and Jai Anusandhan. This forward-looking approach not only recognizes the pivotal role of innovation in driving growth, employment, and overall development but also places a strong emphasis on sustainable solutions.

The inclusion of sustainability in the budget highlights the government’s commitment to addressing environmental challenges and fostering eco-friendly practices. The emphasis on long-term financing and low-interest rates will undoubtedly catalyze private sector involvement in cutting-edge research and innovation across sunrise domains, with a particular focus on sustainable technologies. This approach propels India onto the global stage as a solutions-driven and environmentally conscious nation.

In essence, this budget is a resounding endorsement of the symbiotic relationship between our youth, technology, economic prosperity, and sustainability. It lays the foundation for a future where India not only keeps pace with global advancements but also leads through indigenous innovation, entrepreneurial vigor, and a steadfast commitment to sustainable practices.”

Deepak Visweswaraiah, vice president, platform engineering, and site managing director, Pegasystems, India

With an emphasis on welfare for the youth, women, and farmers reflecting a holistic approach to societal progress, the Interim Budget for this year sets the stage for a very positive and people-centric development. The budget outlines a path towards ‘Vikshit Bharat’ by 2047 and innovation remains to be at the core for this year as well. Backed by a significant focus on women’s empowerment, and with a notable increase in female participation in STEM courses, the aim for this year’s interim budget aligns with our commitment to diversity and inclusivity.

The allocation of INR 1 lakh crore corpus for interest-free loans to foster innovation among the youth is a game-changer, ushering India into a golden era for our tech-savvy talent. We stand ready to leverage these opportunities, contributing to the nation’s growth and development. As a pioneering force in technology, we commend the government’s strategic focus on fostering innovation and enhancing accessibility. The government’s ongoing dedication to fostering skill development, advancing higher education, and upholding fiscal responsibility is praiseworthy and resonates with our vision of propelling India towards technological advancement and economic resilience.

Therefore, this budget establishes a strong groundwork for collaboration, growth, and innovation, reaffirming our dedication to spearheading transformative solutions that empower both individuals and technology providers.”

Sudhindra Holla, Director, Axis Communications, India & SAARC

The Union Budget of India 2024 has a visionary approach to sustainable development. Introducing the Blue Economy 2.0 scheme, focusing on environmental restoration through multimodal strategies, is a commendable step towards a greener future. The budget’s emphasis on improving rail and air connectivity is crucial for fostering economic growth. Implementing major railway corridor programs and converting rail bogeys to higher safety standards demonstrate a commitment to enhancing transportation infrastructure. Similarly, expanding air connectivity to tier-2 and tier-3 cities and the growth of airports are positive moves supporting inclusive development.

Overall, the Union Budget’s focus on sustainable initiatives and strategic infrastructure development sets a promising trajectory for India’s growth. It creates opportunities for various industries to contribute to a more environmentally conscious and technologically advanced future.

Abhinav Jain, Co-Founder & CEO, Almonds AI

Government’s forward-looking budget aligns remarkably well with the impetus required for the AI and technology sectors. The focus on digital infrastructure lays a robust foundation for innovation, and the commitment to skill development among youth mirrors the mission to empower the next generation with AI capabilities.

The support for electric vehicles and clean energy initiatives resonate with the Green Loyalty Program, reinforcing belief in sustainable technological advancement. This budget not only catalyzes a tech-driven economy but also heralds a golden era for companies like ours at the intersection of AI and market technology. We are eager to contribute to this transformative journey and commend the government’s vision for a tech-empowered, inclusive growth trajectory.”

Dr. Ajai Chowdhry, Chairman of Epic Foundation, Co-Founder, HCL

Good budget towards making India a developed nation by 2047. For the first time ever we are talking long term! We need to move from low value added services to becoming a high value added Product Nation India needs to move from services to creating high value added products especially in domains like semiconductors, electronics, drones, Medtech, space etc. ₹1 lakh crore sunrise sector fund will be instrumental in enabling deep R&D to take India towards becoming a Product Nation.

Rajiv Bhatia, President & Country Head, Analytix Solutions

I congratulate the FM for the growth-oriented interim budget which seeks to build on the foundation laid in the previous budgets. The FM has reiterated the commitment to adopt economic policies that sustain growth, improve productivity and create opportunities for all. The budget has identified research and innovation for catalysing growth. There is a clear focus on facilitating greater investments across sectors to continue the growth momentum. The creation of a corpus of Rs. 1 lakh crore for providing long-term financing will boost research and innovation in sunrise sectors and support atmanirbharta in critical sectors.

Vishak Raman, VP of Sales, India, SAARC, SEAHK & ANZ, Fortinet

The cybersecurity challenges have expanded at an unparalleled rate, witnessing a 68% surge in the detection of unique cyber threats over the last 5 years according to FortiGuard Labs. Addressing this threat requires unified approach, leveraging strong partnerships and collaborative efforts across both the public and private sectors, as well as various industries. Understanding the gravity of these concerns, the government has significantly elevated its commitment to safeguarding our nation’s critical infrastructure and digital assets. The latest budget reflects this dedication, nearly doubling the cybersecurity funding from Rs. 400 crores in the previous fiscal year to Rs. 759 crores for the current year. This significant increase in investment towards cybersecurity initiatives arrives at a crucial moment, as we face an expanded threat landscape fuelled by the rapid proliferation of IoT devices and the merging of Operational Technology (OT) and Information Technology (IT) networks.

Amrish Pipada, Founder & CEO, Mega Networks Pvt. Ltd

The Union Budget 2024 demonstrates a finely balanced and growth-oriented framework while promoting economic advancement and job creation. At Mega Networks, we commend the government’s vision of achieving ‘Viksit Bharat’ by 2047, emphasising the importance of research and innovation in the manufacturing sector to establish a robust and resilient foundation. The allocation of ₹1 lakh crore for interest-free, long-term loans in the budget not only sparks innovation but also facilitates greater access to funds, encouraging the private sector to significantly scale up research and development in sunrise sectors. Additionally, increase in the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme to Rs 6200 crore aligns with our Make in India commitment to boost home-grown AI servers and storage domain ensuring a strong presence in the Global-Local market.

Harshvardhan Lunia, founder & CEO, Lendingkart

The interim budget for 2024-2025 resonates with a forward-looking vision, strategically leveraging digital acceleration to empower diverse segments of society. The continued emphasis on grassroots, women, and youth empowerment is commendable, fostering inclusivity in the developmental trajectory. The proposed infrastructural and sectoral reforms are poised to fortify the economic landscape, unlocking a myriad of opportunities for entrepreneurs, SMEs, and MSMEs. This budget underscores India’s commitment to fostering innovation and digitisation, charting a course for sustained economic growth and resilience.

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