CMs of non-BJP ruled states say Union Budget 'disappointing', 'anti-poor'
It has failed to address the country's economic concerns, they add
Chief ministers of non-BJP-ruled states on Wednesday said the Union Budget was "disappointing" and "discriminatory" and had failed to address the country's economic concerns, while those from the saffron party hailed it as visionary and benefiting all sections of society.
West Bengal: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said it was a "dark budget" that offers no ray of hope and has been prepared with an eye on the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
"This Union Budget is not futuristic, totally opportunistic, anti-people and anti-poor. It will benefit only one class of people. This Budget will not help address the country's unemployment issue. It has been prepared with an eye on the 2024 Lok Sabha elections," the Trinamool Congress leader said.
"The changes in the income tax slabs will not help anyone. There is no ray of hope in this Budget -- it is a dark budget," she added.
Kerala: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the Budget does not attempt to solve the growing economic disparities in the country and it was disappointing that the long-sought demands of Kerala for an All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and rail development projects in the state found no mention.
Finance Minister K N Balagopal said allocations in major schemes including the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) and food subsidies were cut down drastically.
Uttarakhand: Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami said it is an inclusive budget touching all sections and also reflects a grand vision for building a new India.
The BJP leader praised the special provisions for the states and its thrust on start-ups in the agricultural sector, boosting tourism and development of border areas, saying it will play a significant role in making Uttarakhand one of the leading states by 2025.
Uttar Pradesh: Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said the Budget has a vision for 'New India' and the country's prosperity and aims to serve 130 crore Indians
"The budget will fulfil the expectations and aspirations of all sections of society, including the poor, farmers, youth and women. Undoubtedly, this budget will prove to be a milestone in making India an economic superpower," the BJP leader added.
UP's finance minister Suresh Khanna said that the Union Budget has something for every section of society.
"This is a holistic budget. The income tax provisions in the budget are a relief to the middle class, and it will also help in increasing the purchasing power of the people," Khanna said.
Opposition Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, however, said that the Union Budget has given "nirasha" (despair) instead of "asha" (hope) to the people of the country and will only benefit the rich.
He also claimed that the budget will further increase inflation and unemployment.
"The BJP is completing a decade of its budgets, but when it did not give anything to the public earlier, what will it give now?" Yadav tweeted in Hindi.
Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati said it would be better if the budget is for the country rather than for the party.
Haryana: Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said the seven priorities of the government towards the country and the society mentioned by the finance minister in the budget will benefit every section.
"This budget is inclusive and futuristic, keeping in mind the empowerment of job professionals, youth, women and farmers.
"Special focus has been laid on infrastructure development, health, employment generation, housing, social welfare, farmers welfare, higher education, innovation and research, which will also be beneficial for Haryana," the BJP leader said.
The announcement of the Indian Institute of Millet for coarse grains, promotion of fisheries and horticulture sector and connecting one crore farmers with natural farming are many such decisions that will further strengthen our agriculture system, he added.
He further said that a lot of provisions have been made in the budget to connect 'New India' with technology.
Himachal Pradesh: Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said it was a "pro-rich" budget and the Union Government has lost its only opportunity to fulfill its promises to people.
"It is silent on rising inflation and unemployment. The hopes of people waiting for the 'Achhe Din' as lured by the BJP in 2014 have been dashed," the Congress leader said.
In a statement, Sukhu said that the budget lacks the vision for the employment sector and there was no addition to MNREGA allocation thereby completely ignoring the rural employment avenues.
Nothing has been projected for Himachal Pradesh in the Union Budget. There is no allocation for the expansion of the rail infrastructure and for the National Highways, he alleged.
He lamented that no special grant has been announced for the states under debt burden.
"We have inherited the debt burden of around Rs 75000 crore from the previous government... There was no mention of reimbursement of GST since June 2022 in the Budget to the small hill states," he said.
Himachal Pradesh Congress Chief Pratibha Singh said the budget was directionless.
"She said that an unsuccessful attempt has been made to woo the employees by giving tax exemption of up to Rs 7 lakhs which should have been increased to at least Rs 12 lakh," she said.
Rajasthan: Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said the Budget was "disappointing" for Rajasthan.
"The people of the state are disappointed because the central government did not accept our just demand of giving national status to the Eastern Rajasthan Canal Project, an important project related to the development of Rajasthan," the Congress leader said.
He said the reduction in allocation for schemes such as the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act proves the Centre is against the interests of poor, landless farmers and common people.
Delhi: Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said the Budget was nothing but a 'jumla' and said it would add a debt of Rs 15 lakh crore.
"We all know that the BJP has made terms like 'acche din' a jumla. The budget by BJP-led Centre is nothing but a jumla. We have heard many such jumlas in the past -- like introduction of bullet trains or the promise of doubling farmers' income or creating 60 lakh jobs," he said.
Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai hailed the Rs 5,300 crore assistance for the Upper Bhadra project in Karnataka
Several ruling BJP leaders, including National General Secretary C T Ravi and state party chief Nalin Kumar Kateel, praised the budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Lok Sabha, calling it "farsighted and pro-poor".
Pointing to the finance minister announcing a hike in the capital expenditure by 33 per cent to Rs 10 lakh crore for infrastructure development, Kateel said, this will also help in generating more jobs.
Gujarat: Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel said the Budget fulfils the hopes and expectations of the country's poor, the deprived, and the middle class by giving them innovative opportunities for development.
"Prioritising seven aspects Saptarishi' inclusive growth, last-mile delivery, infrastructure and investment, green growth, youth power, financial sector and unleashing the potential of the countrymen, this budget will take India's development to new heights," the BJP leader said in a message in Gujarati on micro-blogging site Twitter.
Maharashtra: Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis also said the Budget has taken the interests of all sections of society, including farmers, tribals, women, youth and the middle class into consideration.
"The income tax exemptions up to Rs 7 lakh will help the lower middle class. At the same time income tax limit of Rs 1.5 lakh for income up to Rs 15 lakh will provide a huge relief to the middle class," the BJP leader said.
Madhya Pradesh: Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan welcomed the income tax relief which he said would ensure more savings for the middle class.
Chouhan termed "revolutionary" the Budgetary announcement to recruit more than 38,000 teaching and supporting staff for residential Eklavya Model Schools, which he said will improve the talents of the tribal society.
Opposition Congress president Kamal Nath termed the Budget a cover-up of unfulfilled old promises by "jumlas" (rhetoric).
"We expected the FM will throw light on the announcements that were to be completed in 2022," he said.
"The income of farmers was to be doubled by 2022, housing was to be available to every poor by 2022, the bullet train was to run in the country by 2022. But the Finance Minister neither gave any reason for the non-fulfilment of these announcements nor apologised to the people of the country," he said.
The former chief minister said the Budget shows the government intends to divert "the attention of people from the present complex situation by showing hollow dreams for the future".
Chhattisgarh: Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel said the Budget was cruel and lacks provisions to double the income of farmers, create employment opportunities and control inflation.
"It (Budget) can be called nirmam' budget of Nirmala ji. It neither has anything for youths, nor for women. It has no provision to double the income of farmers and for the welfare of Scheduled Tribe and Scheduled Caste communities. This budget is drafted only eyeing elections," said the Congress leader.