Pranab Mukherjee
he Union Finance Minister, Pranab MukherjeePIB

Presenting the General Budget 2012-13 in Lok Sabha Friday, Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee announced various mashers for mitigating shortage of housing for low income groups.

Provisions under the Rural Housing Fund are proposed to be enhanced from Rs. 3000 crore to Rs. 4000 crore.

Pranab also proposed enhancement of limit of indirect finance under priority sector from Rs. 5 lakh to Rs. 10 lakh.

The Finance Minister proposed allowing External Commercial Borrowings (ECB) for low cost affordable housing projects and setting-up of a Credit Guarantee Trust Fund to ensure improved flow of institutional credit for housing loans.

The Finance Minister announced extension of the scheme of interest subvention of 1 percent on housing loan up to Rs. 15 lakh where the cost of the house does not exceed Rs. 25 lakh for another year.

Other proposals of the the Finance Minister include:

  • Allowing Qualified Foreign Investors (QFIs) access to Indian Corporate Bond market.
  • Simplification of process of issuing Initial Public Offers (IPOs) and lowering of cost.
  • Mandatory for companies to issue IPOs of Rs 10 crore and above in electronic form.
  • Allowing Electronic Voting facility to provide opportunities for wider shareholder participation.
  • Two-way fungibility in Indian Depository Receipts (IDRs) permitted subject to a ceiling.