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Published On: Fri, Feb 1st, 2019

Uniou Budget 2019 as ‘election manifesto’, Jackpot For Middle Class: Opposition Party

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goyelkhargeNEW DELHI :  Soon after Interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal presented his interim Budget 2019, reactions poured in from both opposition and from within government.
The highlight of the entire budget was tax exemption for people earning salary amounting to Rs5 lakh/ pa or less. 
Opposition on the other hand termed the same as “damp squib”. Taking on government Congress leader Shashi Tharoor said “The whole exercise has turned out to be a damp squib. We’ve seen one good thing that is tax exemption for the middle class.

Rs 6000 in income support for farmers boils down to Rs 500 per month. Is that supposed to enable them to live with the honour and dignity?” Even senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh took on government and said “Constitution provides a 5 year Term to a Govt.In a 5 year Term an Elected Government can present 5 full budgets. Modi ji who has scant respect for the Constitution instead of taking a Vote on Account has presented a full 6th Budget in a 5 year Term provided by the Constitution”.
He further added saying “What can we call it? Another “Jumla” of false Promises? What happens if the present Govt is voted out in 2019? Modi ji as the saying goes “You can fool some people some time some people all the time but NOT AAL THE PEOPLE ALL THE TIME”.”Rahul Gandhi said “5 years of your incompetence and arrogance has destroyed the lives of our farmers. Giving them Rs. 17 a day is an insult to everything they stand and work for.”
West Bengal Cheif minister Mamata Banerjee said “Interim budget has no value as NDA government’s term ends soon.” He further added “this govt has no moral authority or responsibility to place the budget for 5 years when they’ll not be in power; the govt will go for expiry. After expiry, if you give medicine, is there any value? What will be the value? This is absolutely valueless.”
Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge the Union Budget as BJP’s “election manifesto” and accused the ruling dispensation of bribing voters ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. Speaking to reporters outside Parliament, Kharge said the promises made by the BJP in this budget are mere poll sops and “jumlas”, which will not be fulfilled as the BJP has a mandate to rule only till May this year. General elections are slated to be held in April-

May. “I would term today’s budget as BJP’s election manifesto,” Kharge said. mamta
“This is all being done for elections. I directly charge them of paying bribe to voters,” he alleged. Mocking the budget as a manifesto of the ruling BJP, opposition leader Sharad Yadav claimed the government has announced a number of sops keeping the general election in mind and said people are not “foolish” as not to see through them.Terming Finance Minister Piyush Goyal’s mention of government’s achievements in his speech as “bulls**t”, he said in a statement, “The achievements as mentioned in the budget speech are bulls**t as nowhere has any poor person benefitted from the government’s schemes. The ruling party is very good at making false statements.”

Expressing concern over monetary provisions to meet the Interim Budget proposals, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee described the document as a “farce” and “manifesto of the BJP”.”The budget proposals will be not implemented… New government will present the budget. This government’s expiry date will be over in one month. What will they implement in one month?” There is “no future” of the Interim Budget ahead of the elections, she said. The government has “no moral authority or responsibility for presenting a full year’s budget, when it won’t be in power after elections”, she said.
“The interim budget is a trailer for what will take India towards prosperity after the Lok Sabha polls,” said Prime Minister Narendra Modi after Minister Piyush Goyal made a slew of big ticket announcements in parliament. Heading into the national election, the government has been facing farmer anger and doubts over job creation. Farm distress was among the factors seen to cost the ruling BJP the heartland states of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh in polls in December.shashi
Those who earn upto Rs. 5 lakh a year do not have to pay Income Tax, minister Piyush Goyal said, doubling the exemption cap. Effectively, those earning upto Rs. 6.5 lakh per year with investments to make savings will pay no tax, he said, to loud desk-thumping by BJP members and chants of “Modi, Modi”.Piyush Goyal also unveiled direct cash support of Rs. 6,000 for small farmers in a scheme called the “Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi” or PM-Kisan scheme at the cost of Rs. 75,000 crore to the government. Small and marginal farmers who have less than two acres land will get cash in three instalments of Rs. 2,000 in their accounts. The first instalment, said Mr Goyal, would be in by March.

The government also said it would launch a pension scheme for workers in the unorganised sector, which employs some 420 million people. Those with a monthly income of up to Rs. 15,000 will have an assured pension of Rs. 3,000.The minister said the tax proposals would translate to a Rs. 18,500 benefit to some three crore middle class taxpayers, self-employed and senior citizens.goyel

The government also allocated Rs. 60,000 crore for the rural job scheme, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee (MNREGA).
The big giveaways resulted in fiscal slippage, for a government that has been seeking to drag down its deficit.

The budget would put the fiscal deficit for the year ending on March 31 at 3.4 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), slightly higher than the targeted 3.3 percent. Piyush Goyal set a deficit target of 3.4 percent for 2019/20, instead of the earlier target of 3.1 per cent, citing “revenue shortfalls and increased spending ahead of the Lok Sabha election”.On Thursday evening, the government revised upwards its growth estimates for the two years since the notes ban — 2017-18 and 2016-17 — to 7.2 per cent and 8.2 per cent.
This was hours after the details of a yet-to-be-released report showed unemployment was at a four-decade high in 2017-18. Two non-government members of the National Statistical Commission, which vets the report, quit on Tuesday accusing the centre of withholding its release.
As some union ministers praised the budget and called it a “surgical strike” on the opposition, Congress president Rahul Gandhi commented that surgical strikes “will happen on the government on issues like the Rafale deal, jobs and demonetisation during the general election”.(With Agency Inputs ).

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