Congress gives thumbs down to state budget

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The State Budget lacked the direction to fulfil the promises made to common man before election besides to meet the challenge of employment to the youth, while the imposition of additional services tax would lead to price hike burdening further the poor and common man, said former Minister and senior Congress leader, Raman Bhalla while addressing huge gathering of party workers at Marble Market in Gandhi Nagar constituency today.
Bhalla said that the budget has failed to meet the expectations of the youth, the farmers, the low and middle income groups, salaried class as well. He gave thumbs down to the Budget proposals for 2016-17, saying most of the proposals would lead to a shrinking of the state economy rather than reviving it.”The budget presented by the Finance Minister is high on rhetoric, flawed on comparisons. It is bereft on any ideas, it lacks imagination. The annual Budget presented has again created uncertainty in the industrial sector as there is no clarity as to how the government wanted to address the problem of unemployment and attracting investments, Bhalla added.
Adding further former Minister said that the Budget speech read more as “platitudes” to the industry than anything substantive. The PDP-BJP government had kept on hold the new industrial policy adopted by the State Administrative Council on March 14. That policy envisaged more than Rs 20,000 crore investments by industrialists and jobs to 150,000 people apart from thrust on transparency, accountability and e-governance. It was expected that the Budget would spell out something on the industrial and employment-friendly measures, but to the disappointment of the local industrialists too, there is uncertainty over the new industrial policy as the government has failed to offer anything substantive for the promotion of industry in J&K, he lamented.
Government has completely ignored people of state especially those who are completely dependent on agriculture and live stock though most of the population of State is dependent on agriculture. Agriculture has become expensive for farmers for last one year ever since the new govt is formed. Govt has failed to cope with the inflation and has not shown any seriousness to increase wages / honorarium of a section of society which is working on too less salary. Bhalla said that govt must increase honorarium/salary of Anganwari Workers/Helpers, ASHAs, and Mid-Day Meal Workers who have totally been kept out of the purview of the budget,” No enhancement has been proposed in the pension for old people, widows, handicapped, orphans and students. The unemployment problem which has assumed alarming propositions has been left unattended in the budget. No roadmap has been shown in the budget to establish new power projects which can produce jobs to unemployed educated youth.
The figures of budget are deceptive and won’t benefit common man, Bhalla maintained.

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