New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi termed Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Amrit Kaal Bu
dget as ‘Mitr Kaal’ Budget implying that it will only benefit the rich with nothing for the poor and the unemployed population of the country.
As Sitharaman presented her 5th Budget on Feb 1 in Parliament, she termed it as the first budget of Amrit Kaal. Prime Minister Narendra Modi too mentioned Amrit Kaal as he hailed the budget, which will fulfil the dreams of aspirational India.
Playing on the word, Rahul Gandhi turned it into ‘Mitr Kaal’ and said the budget has no vision to create jobs and no roadmap to build India’s future.
“1% richest own 40% wealth, 50% poorest pay 64% of GST, 42% youth are unemployed – yet, PM doesn’t care!” Rahul Gandhi tweeted.
He said that the Budget proves that the government has no roadmap to build India’s future.
As this is the last full budget before the Lok Sabha elections 2024, some populist measures were expected. Sitharaman announced major income tax tweaks which will exempt people earning up to ₹7 lakh a year from income tax in the new tax regime.
“The Finance Minister has not mentioned the words — unemployment, poverty, inequality or equity anywhere in her speech. Mercifully, she has mentioned the word poor twice in her speech. There is no reduction in the prices of petrol, diesel, cement, fertilizers etc. Who has benefitted by this budget? Certainly not the poor.”
— Senior Congress leader and former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram
While this is one of the major announcements of Budget 2023, the Opposition trashed the Budget speech as an election speech. The Congress said Sitharaman did not even mention the word unemployment, poverty, inequality once in her speech.
Budget “anti-people”: Mamata Banerjee
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, a fierce critic of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, slammed the union budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, saying she could have made it in half an hour. She called it “anti-people”.
“Today’s budget is against the poor people. It’s anti-people. That’s why I condemn this budget. There is no light in this budget, it’s only darkness. It contains lies, bluff. It’s to show people something and misinformation because of upcoming elections,” she said.