Wednesday, Aug 17, 2022

‘Finance Minister Could Have Been Brave But Chose To Be Timid’: Congress On Union Budget 2021

‘This year’s budget lacks a roadmap for accelerating growth and reviving consumer demand,’ senior Congress leader and deputy leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma said

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman at Parliament before presenting the Budget Tribhuvan Tiwari/Outlook

Reacting to the Union Budget that was presented on Monday, the Congress lashed out at the Centre and claimed that Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's speech was oblivious to the declining GDP and alleged that the budget was a case of "wrong diagnosis and prescription".

Dissecting Union Budget 2021: Here’s What The Experts Say

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, while presenting the Union Budget 2021-22 in Parliament on Monday said the budget rests on six pillars including those of healthcare and infrastructure. Sitharaman announced the scrapping of income tax for senior citizens under certain conditions, new rules for removal of double taxation, and a reduction in the time period of tax assessments among other measures. Read more

However, senior Congress leader and Deputy leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma termed the budget as “disappointing.”

"The FM could have been brave but chose to be timid. The nation needed a bold budget and more direct transfers to the weaker sections to revive demand, restart job creation," Sharma tweeted.

He also added that this year’s Budget lacks a roadmap for accelerating growth and revival of consumer demand.

Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari also alleged that the budget was a "national monetisation plan -- short hand for National Sell out" and there was "no central focus in the budget".

"FM’s Talkthorn (sic) oblivious that growth rate of GDP is in a record 37th month decline. Worst Crisis since 1991. Except for a National Monetisation Plan - short hand for National Sell out no Central Focus in Budget. Bottom line-Will not grow economy but sell the family silver," he tweeted.

Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor also took a dig at the Centre over the budget, saying "this BJP government reminds me of the garage mechanic who told his client, 'I couldn't fix your brakes, so I made your horn louder'."

Another Congress spokesperson Jaiveer Shergill said the budget has left the middle class "bruised and wounded" by not changing tax slabs, not increasing deductions, not making new deduction slots like home loans, not bringing fuel under GST, not sharing Rs 19 Lakh crore gain from fuel taxes, not reducing GST rates.

"After promising a century, FM is out hit wicket at Zero !! Instead of calling it as 'budget of the century' it will be remembered as 'blunder of the century' by BJP Govt #Budget2021," he tweeted.

"Budget case of 'wrong diagnosis and wrong prescription' by BJP government which instead of healing, reforming and rejuvenating has chosen to adopt damaging, disappointing and destroying approach to push the economy further into vortex of recession," he added.

(With PTI inputs)