The CPI (M), which heads the Left Front government in Tripura, has criticised the Railway Budget for “ignoring” the north-east, while the Opposition Congress has termed it progressive and pro-people.

“The budget is very frustrating. It has cheated the people of the north-eastern region,” CPI (M) spokesperson Gautam Das said on Tuesday.

The region got next to nothing as the budget proposed no new project or funds. “We believe that the budget is aimed at the next general election, but it will not work,” he said.

Mr. Das pointed out that the budget had not set any deadline for completing the project to lay a broad-gauge track between Lumding and Badarpur in Assam, which could immensely help Tripura. Agartala is linked to Lumding through a metre-gauge line, whose conversion has become uncertain owing to security problems in some hilly areas.

Countering the charges, Pradesh Congress Committee president Sudip Roy Burman said: “It has taken care of the interests of all sections. Fare has not been hiked.”

He said the UPA government was keen on the development of the region, and it had proposed most of projects now being implemented. There would be no dearth of funds for rail link expansion in the region.