Updated: February 2, 2020 10:37:48 am
Hours after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled the Budget for fiscal 2020-21, the Congress tore into the government, saying there was nothing in the Budget which will revive growth.
It said the government has junked reforms, failed to come up with steps to create jobs and has given up on reviving the economy, fiscal consolidation, accelerating the growth rate and promoting private investment. It also accused the government of trying to dispose of national assets through a “grand clearance sale”.
Asked to rate the Budget on a scale of 1 to 10, former finance minister P Chidambaram said, “10 has got a one and a zero. You can pick either a number.”
Arguing that unemployment and economic slowdown are the major challenges before the country today, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi said, “I didn’t see any concrete idea, any strategic idea that could help our youngsters get jobs. I saw a lot of tactical stuff, redundant things…I think, it describes the government quite well. (The budget speech was) more than 2 hours, 45 minutes… Lot of repetitions, lot of rambling, nothing concrete, so, it is the mindset of the Government, all talk, all talk, all talk, nothing happening, but the country is, of course, suffering…”
The Congress also hit out the government for reducing food subsidy claiming that it has snatched food from the plates of the poor. “How do you call it a Budget for a caring society? Food subsidy has been reduced, fertiliser subsidy has been reduced… Petroleum subsidy shows a marginal increase because of anticipated increase in oil prices. It appears that the people will not get any relief on the price front,” Chidambaram said.
While Chidambaram said he was unable to recall any memorable idea or statement in the speech, senior party leader Anand Sharma said the “Budget is insipid, lacking in stimulus for growth and there was no clear road map for job creation”.
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