Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today announced plans to establish a television channel dedicated to start-ups. The proposed channel will be broadcast from the Doordarshan platform and is aimed at inspiring and promoting start-ups across the country.
"This shall serve as a platform for promoting startups, discussing issues affecting their growth, match-making with venture capitalists and for funding and tax planning. This channel shall be designed and executed by startups themselves," she said.
The finance minister also discussed taxation policies changes aimed at further encouraging start-ups.
Ms Sitharaman proposed the creation of an e-verification system to identify potential investors in start-ups and the source of his/her funds. In addition, investors in start-ups, also called "angel investors" will not face scrutiny if they file requisite declarations.
"With this, funds raised by start-ups will not require any kind of scrutiny from the Income Tax Department," the finance minister said.
She also said special arrangements would be made by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) for pending assessments of start-ups and to address their grievances.
"It will be ensured that no inquiry or verification in such cases can be carried out by the Assessing Officer without obtaining approval of his supervisory officer," Nirmala Sitharaman said.
The announcements come as the government looks at ways to stimulate growth in the economy.
Chief Economic Adviser Krishnamurthy Subramanian, presenting the Economic Survey of India yesterday, highlighted the fact that nearly 85 per cent of companies in India were small-scale firms that employed fewer people than large-scale firms that were significantly fewer in number.
Ms Sitharaman, who served as the defence minister in the first government led by PM Modi, presented her first budget at a time when India has lost its top spot as the world's fastest-growing major economy.
India's GDP or gross domestic product growth slipped to 5.8 per cent in the March quarter - the slowest pace in 20 quarters. A primary focus in the Budget is widely expected to be on ways to boost economic growth.
"It is now the sixth largest economy. Five years ago it was 11th," the finance Minister said, adding that India will become a $3 trillion economy this year.
With inputs from ANI