Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman highlighted India's booming economy while saying the Indian economy has witnessed great transformation in the last 10 years. “The fruits of development have reached to every strata,” she says while focussing on the empowerment of women through entrepreneurship which has gained momentum in the last 10 years.

Furthermore, female enrolment in higher education has gone up by 28% in the past 10 years, according to the FM’s speech.

With an objective to empower women financially, Sitharaman also announced a one-time small saving scheme for women. The scheme will be called Mahila Samman Saving Certificate which will be available till March 2025. The scheme will have a tenure of 2 years and will offer a fixed rate of interest at 7%, says the minister.

“The empowerment of women through entrepreneurship, ease of living and dignity for them has gained momentum in these last 10 years,” says Sitharaman.

30 crore MUDRA Yojana loans have been given to women entrepreneurs. Furthermore, female enrolment in higher education has gone up by 28% in the past 10 years, according to the FM. In STEM courses, women contribute 43% of enrolment – one of the highest in the world.

All these measures are getting reflected in the increasing participation of women in the workforce, she says.

“There is transparency and assurance that benefits are available for all eligible people, and the resources are distributed towards all eligible people without any discrimination. We are addressing systemic inequalities that have plagued our society,” points out the FM.

She also highlights the need to focus on four major pillars – poor, women, youth and annadatas. Their empowerment and well-being will drive the country forward, she adds.

“The Indian economy has witnessed positive transformation in the last 10 years. People are looking towards the future with hope. In 2014, the country was facing enormous challenges. With Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikaas, the Narendra Modi-led government has overcome those challenges,” says Sitharaman in her speech. 

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