Special Correspondent

Kolkata: There is nothing to enthuse the people in the budget proposals as they fail to address the major problems of unemployment, price rise and inflation that have hit the common man hard, West Bengal Finance Minister Asim Dasgupta said here on Wednesday.

The proposals do not provide any direction to better the lot of the common people and bring all-round development in the country, chairman of the Left Front committee Biman Bose said. "Only when its glittering exterior is removed will the actuals be revealed."

For curbing inflation, Dr. Dasgupta said the Centre "should not only self-critically examine its previous decision of allowing corporate houses and foreign direct investment in retail trade [with monopolistic price jacking implications] but also come out with a complete course of action in closely interacting with the State for extending the overall public distribution system in essential commodities."

The proposals would have an adverse impact on the coming Eleventh Five Year Plan period, just as the budgetary outlays of the previous five years ignored the common people's interests, Mr. Bose said, not ruling out the possibility of it impacting Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh.

No tangible proposals

There was little to indicate that the workers and those belonging to the middle class might benefit and even though the country was going through a crisis in agriculture there were no tangible proposals for protecting the interests of families involved in agriculture, agricultural workers and the poor in general, Mr. Bose, who is also the Secretary of the State Committee of the Communist Party of India [Marxist] said.

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