A sky lab, dull, verbose Budget: BJP
New Delhi, Feb 28 : India's main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday slammed the Union Budget 2013-14 presented by Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram in the Parliament and called it 'unimaginative and dull'.
"It is an unimaginative and dull budget," BJP Sushma Swaraj told reporters on Thursday.
"It is a disappointing budget. It has nothing for the women, youths and poor people," she said.
"The Finance Minister did not think about the common man and the farmers while framing the budget," Swaraj said.
BJP leader Arun Jaitley said the Union Budget lacked substance.
"The budget is verbose. On substance, it is extremely low," Jaitley said.
Criticizing the Union Budget, BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi tweeted: "It is a 'Sky Lab' Budget, far away from the Socio-Economic and Ground Realities of the Country."
Chidambaram on Thursday presented the Union Budget 2013-14 in Parliament making no revision in the basic tax slabs, but introduced a surcharge for those earning above Rs 1 crore, construed as taxing the super rich, while he aimed at 'higher growth' that can bring inclusive and sustainable development.
With the mood of the country influenced by the growing attack on women, the finance minister also announced a Nirbhaya fund for women empowerment in memory of the Delhi braveheart and announced an all women bank though many criticised the latter saying it is as if women cannot use the existing banks.
Chidambaram has sought to increase allocation to key areas and provide incentives for investments and savings while containing the fiscal deficit to 4.8% of GDP while keeping in mind the elections this year also focused on some populist measures.
The total expenditure in the Union Budget 2013-14 is pegged at Rs. 16,65,297 crore. Out of it Rs.5,55,322 crore (33%) is Plan expenditure. The non-Plan expenditure is estimated at Rs 11,09,975 crore.
The FM announced allocations for the welfare of schedule caste and tribes, differently abled and women related programmes. He said faced with huge fiscal deficit, he had no choice but to rationalise expenditure.
He also announced India's first all women bank as a public sector bank and announced allocation of Rs 1000 crore for initial capital.
The FM also announced a Rs 1000 crore Nirbhaya Fund for empowerment of women, in commemoration of the Delhi braveheart who died after a fatal sexual assault in a bus and triggered a nationwide outrage against sex crimes against women.
He said the Budget has before it one overarching goal - to create opportunities for the youth to acquire education and skills that will get them decent jobs or self-employment that will bring them adequate incomes that will enable them to live with their families in a safe and secure environment.
The Budget sets a target of skilling 90 lakh people in 2013-14, for which funds will be released by the National Rural Livelihood Mission and National Urban Livelihood Mission.