Union budget gets mixed response in Uttar Pradesh

Lucknow, July 10: The union budget for the year 2014-15 presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday was greeted with mixed response in Uttar Pradesh, a state that is politically important for the BJP.

While most people in the state said the budget was "in the right direction" and would "pay long-term dividends", the opposition parties slammed the budget saying it had nothing for the common man.

Samajwadi Party general secretary and Rajya Sabha member Ram Gopal Yadav termed the budget "thoroughly disappointing and far away from reality".

"This budget is for corporates and industrialists and does not take into account the common man," he said.

Surendra Mohan Gupta, trade leader associated with the Samajwadi Party, also slammed the budget, calling it "uninspiring and directionless".

Calling it a budget which did not reflect any major policy initiatives for the poor and for villagers, Gupta questioned why job growth and generating employment did not find any major place in the union budget.

The Bharatiya Janata Party state unit, however, contested the allegations and said all sectors had received enough allocation and the needs of the state were taken care of.

The Rs.4,200 crore which has been set aside for the 'Jal Marg Vikas' project on the Ganga river from Allahabad to Haldia, over a distance of 1,620 km is a major forward movement and will be a big-time game changer, said BJP's state spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathak.

He said this would be the first inland waterway in the country, and it was for the first time a government had taken into account waterways as a commuting and commercially viable transport.

Setting up of a trade facilitation centre to promote handloom work in Varanasi, the parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has also been welcomed as it will give fresh impetus to the handloom and weavers community in the temple town.

An announcement to set up an All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in the Poorvanchal region of the state has also been welcomed by people.

Increase in tax slabs and savings have also been welcomed.

"We cannot call the budget exceptionally good but it appears to be in the right direction," said Urmila Singh, a retired government employee.

Bina Sharma, a practising doctor, welcomed the budget and said the Narendra Modi government has so far lived up to the expectations.


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