With opposition parties dubbing this year’s Union Budget as “anti-people”, Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal on Sunday said those criticising it have not read it properly.
“I am amazed when some call this budget as anti-people. Criticism on their part seems to come because they seem to have not read it properly,” Mr. Bansal said.
He asked whether giving subsidies worth Rs 1.88 lakh crore on food, fertilisers and petroleum products was an anti-people step.
“The provisions made for agriculture, stress on manufacturing policy where small and medium enterprises stand to benefit, provisions of employment generation for thousands of our youth and upgradation of skills of those employed, these are just a few provisions in this budget, which I am surprised that some dub it as ‘corporate budget’,” he said.
Opposition parties have described the Budget as “anti-people”, warning it would lead to a price spiral.
When asked how he sees the Parliament running in the week ahead, Mr. Bansal said, “The Parliament will certainly run very smoothly. The UPA has the numbers”.
“Government enjoys stability and there is full support to the UPA. There is no problem despite whatever anyone may try to do”.
Mr. Bansal, who is also Congress MP from Chandigarh, was speaking on the sidelines of flagging off the Chandigarh-Bandra Terminus Express train from the railway station here.
When asked about controversial author Salman Rushdie’s statement that blocking his presence in Jaipur “led the Congress party down the road” in Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, Mr. Bansal said he does not know how he said this.
“I don’t know how he has said this....don’t know (in what context he said),” he said.
Meanwhile, the minister informed that as against the earlier announcement that the Chandigarh-Bandra Terminus train would run only once a week, it has now been decided that it would run twice from Chandigarh and Bandra in Mumbai.