As Finance Minister Arun Jaitley proposes Budget 2014-15 on Thursday, here is what our experts have to say:
# ‘Welcome to the real world’ (by P Chidambaram): I am glad that Arun Jaitley has acknowledged the basic validity of the numbers presented in the interim budget for 2014-15 and has stuck to them.
# Building half-bridges (by Pratap Bhanu Mehta): The government has made some infrastructure commitments. But its big bet is on the private sector to revive investment through three instruments: unlocking bottlenecks in existing investment; reforms in the financial sector to enable raising of capital; and public-private partnerships.
# From hope to reality (by Surjit S Bhalla): No matter how you slice it, Budget 2014-15 is one of the best content budgets of the last two decades.
# Plumbing over poetry (by Manish Sabharwal): Urbanisation is about taking jobs to people, not the other way round.
# Semblance of a strategy (by Yoginder K Alagh): The FM detailed a number of important steps in a series of random statements.
# Continuity and some change (by Meghnad Desai): It would be better to spend more time on a discussion of strategy and then lay out overall numbers succinctly.
# Making fervent push for balanced growth (by Rana Kapoor): On the Inflation control and management front, the creation of a Price Stabilisation Fund to mitigate near term food price risks is a laudable initiative.
# Focus on education and skill development praiseworthy (by Balvinder Kalsi): The major thrust this budget seems to have put is on increasing investments in agriculture and improving agriculture productivity.
# Towards fiscal responsibility, development (by G M Rao): We welcome the announcement of 3P India — the agency to streamline and address the issues that the developers have been facing.
# Bracing the economy for resurgence, without stoking inflation flames (by CS Verma): Against a challenging and often conflicting set of objectives for the current fiscal, the FM has done an excellent balancing act. Fiscal deficit, targeted at 4.1%, has a fair degree of challenge.