Budget leak reeks of early Lok Sabha polls: CPI

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New Delhi, Feb 28 (UNI) The CPI today lambasted the Congress-led UPA government for ''stooping low enough to leak the Budget for gaining an electoral edge'' and foresaw the possibility of the Lok Sabha polls being held this year itself.

''It appears that general elections could be conducted this year itself,'' CPI Floor leader in the Lok Sabha Gurudas Dasgupta told UNI amid reports that the government had set aside Rs 30,000 crore in the Budget to reduce the debt burden of farmers.

He said political parties were competing among themselves for taking the credit for the budget provisions for farmers and flayed the Manmohan Singh government for ''deliberately leaking the information to the Congress' farmers wing for electoral gains''.

''The proceedings of Parliament are being stalled on the farmers' issue as the parties want to take the credit of the one-time election gift,'' he said.

The confidentiality of the Budget had been violated, which was a blatant abuse of Parliamentary practices and norms, he added.

However, the CPI leader maintained that the agararian crisis was so ''deep'' that a single ''damage control exercise'' would not be able to mitigate the farmers' plight and effect a turnaround in the agriculture sector. ''A one-time damage control exercise cannot salvage the rural and agricultural economy, however big the election gift may be.'' The CPI leader said there was every possibiity that the debt burden of the farmers' would be taken care of in the Budget proposals to be presented in the Lok Sabha tomorrow.

''We wonder how the UPA government, which has been adopting an anti-farmer policy, now has suddenly become their friend...

This is an act of mockery,'' Mr Dasgupta said.


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