LF in Tripura dissatisfied over Union Budget

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Agartala, March 2: The Left Front (LF) in Tripura has expressed dissatisfaction over the Union Budget, 2008-09, and accused the UPA government at the Centre of ignoring basic problems of the country.

Terming the budget as ''election oriented'', state Finance Minister Badal Choudhury said though Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram announced that 232 more districts across the country would be brought under the national flagship programme - National Rural Guarantee Programme (NREGA) - the allocation had not been substantially increased in the proposal.

''The annual outlay for the NREGA was Rs 12,000 crore for the fiscal 2008-09 and this year it will be only Rs 16,000 crore as proposed in the budget but the outlay was less keeping in view the increased number of districts to be brought under the programme,'' he stated.

He alleged that the aspirations of the entire Northeastern region had been ignored in the budget as no proposal was made to establish higher educational institutions in the region whereas three more IITs and 16 more NITs would come up in the country.

''While allocating Rs 344 billion for the education sector, Mr Chidambaram has announced to set up three more IITs in Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan this fiscal, but unfortunately nothing has been offered for the NE region,'' Mr Choudhury stated.


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