The last Budget of the Congress-led UPA government before the next general election does not cater to people's aspirations for development. It is a mere formality to complete one more year in power. It is not sensitive towards people's needs.
The UPA government has lost its final chance to prepare the nation to face the global economic crisis. It has failed to show political will in taking measures for long-term development. This is because of the policy paralysis in the UPA government, whose tenure has been marred with scams and allegations of corruption.
Lamenting on the global economic crisis will not improve the country's economic condition. Instead of taking bold and courageous steps to come out of the crisis, the government has, with this Budget, further pushed the people into gloom and pessimism.
The Budget fails to show ways to increase the country's GDP, growth rate, fiscal prudence, or control non-plan expenditure and decrease fiscal deficit.
Despite the fact that India is a nation with the largest youth population in the world, the central government is being indifferent towards the country's youth. The provisions for skill development and employment generation are nothing more than a mockery of today's young population. There is no seriousness in the Budget for attracting investments in infrastructure and social services sectors.
The present government's economic management has gone bankrupt, and its debt burden is much more than the total debt of all states put together. Instead of encouraging development of the states, the Centre has resorted to vote-bank politics. There is no policy guidance for different states' contribution to the overall economy. In this Budget, one also fails to see the central government's commitment towards agriculture and rural development, as well as towards the poor and the deprived.
The Budget presented by the finance minister is a disappointing one for the aam aadmi. Overall, it is a testimony of UPA-2's non-performance in governance in the last five years.
We have already seen an example of the UPA government's mismanagement of public money in the railway budget. The Union Budget will do nothing to control price rise, and the railway budget will burden the poor and the middle-class. By saying that there is no hike in rail travel rates, the railway minister is misleading the nation. By saying inflation will be brought under control, the finance minister is misleading the nation.
Based on a statement by the Gujarat government