Editorial: Budget – Bouquets & Brickbats

The Union Budget tabled by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Parliament on Monday has evoked mixed response from various quarters, right from politicians to industry leaders to experts.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed the Union budget, saying it has the vision of Aatma Nirbharta (self-reliance) and addresses all sections of society, while keeping farmers and villages at its heart. “This budget has a special focus on strengthening the agriculture sector and boosting farmers’ income. Villages and farmers are at its heart,” Modi said.

The budget will bring several positive changes for individuals, investors, industry and infrastructure sector, the Prime Minister said in his televised remarks on the Union budget 2021-22 presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Parliament. Modi said the budget has been presented in extraordinary circumstances and has a sense of reality as well as a confidence of development in it.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi hit out at the Centre on Monday following the presentation of the 2021-22 Union Budget, alleging that the Narendra Modi government plans to handover India’s assets to crony capitalists. Congress leader P Chidambaram said that the government had only marginally raised health funding, which when adjusted to inflation becomes nil.

In Tamilnadu, Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami on Monday welcomed several announcements made in the union budget by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman but sought a review of the cess regime in the interest of states. He welcomed schemes for TN. Deputy CM O Panneerselvam has said many schemes to revive economy have been announced. “Finance Minister has increased the limit to borrow. I welcome this budget,” he said.

DMK president M K Stalin said the Centre had ‘ignored’ Tamilnadu for the last six years and had given an impression in this budgetary exercise that it was implementing mega schemes for the state, with an eye on polls. He claimed that the Budget offers an ‘illusionary lollipop’ to the people of the poll-bound State. While tall announcements have been made, the real success lies in making them into a reality.

 

NT Bureau