Union Budget `directionless`, `unfeasible`: Congress

Trashing the NDA government`s budget as "directionless" and "unfeasible", Congress today slammed Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for going "overboard on mindless populism".

PTI| Last Updated: Jul 11, 2014, 22:34 PM IST

New Delhi: Trashing the NDA government`s budget as "directionless" and "unfeasible", Congress today slammed Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for going "overboard on mindless populism".

Ridiculing various provisions of the budget to bring metro facility in Lucknow and Ahmedabad, party spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi wondered "who is that magician who will install metro service in Lucknow with Rs 100 crore".

Speaking separately party general secretary Digvijay Singh said that the Finance Minister has gone overboard on mindless populism by allocating just Rs 100 crore each to more than 28 schemes.

"There is no provision of a price stabilisation to control inflation which the BJP had promised in its election campaign. While there is 12 per cent increase in the allocation for defence, there is no increase in the budgetary provision for health and education and the Finance Minister has totally neglected women`s sector," Singh said.

He said there is nothing extraordinary. "He has spoken of five more IITs and IIMs. The allocation for the purpose is just Rs 500 crore, when an IIT requires 1500 to 2000 crore," he said.

Singh said the leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley had demanded that IT exemption limit be raised to Rs five lakh, which he has not been able to fulfill as Finance Minister.

At the AICC briefing, Singh said that the budget does have some minimalist attempts at new direction and new aspects, which Congress welcomes cautiously like increasing FDI in defence and start up fund for village entrepreneurship for rural areas.

"But if you see the vast landscape of the budget, it is a reasonless, directionless, impractical and unfeasible document. It is totally disproportionate to all the hype created during their election campaign. Full of sound and fury signifying nothing.
"If with this mandate you are not able to give a new direction and momentum, can this nation expect better from them in future. From your statements it seemed as if you are going to offer a paradise or a least a mini paradise. At least you could have offered the promised achche din to people," the Congress spokesperson said.
He also claimed that almost 90 to 95 percent schemes mentioned in the budget are continuation from the UPA regime.