Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday presented the second Union Budget of the Narendra Modi government. Reacting to the Budget speech, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi said, "The main issue is unemployment. I didn't see any concrete idea, any strategic idea that would help our youngsters get a job. I saw a lot of tactical stuff but I didn't see any central idea."
He added, "It describes the government quite well. It (the budget speech) was more than 2 hours 45 minutes. Lot of repetition, lot of rambling, nothing concrete so its the mindset of the government. All talk, all talk, all talk, nothing happening but the country is suffering. You (speaking to the reporters) can talk to youngsters in university and college, you all know what is going on and nothing happened here to help youngsters."
Congress leader and senior spokesperson Anand Sharma said that "budget is insipid, lacking in stimulus for growth" and no clear roadmap for job creation has been given in the budget. The Congress, on its official Twitter handle, also said that core sector growth stood at 1.3 per cent in December, despite the significant fall from the same time last year, and Budget has failed to layout a roadmap on how the government plans to address this serious issue.
Slamming the Union Budget, the CPM said that it consisted of just "platitudes" and did not address the problems faced by the people. Reacting to the Budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury said that it did nothing to alleviate "people's miseries". "Just platitudes & slogans. Nothing substantial to alleviate peoples' misery, the growing unemployment, rural wage crash, farmers' distress suicides and galloping prices," he tweeted.
In a major announcement, the Narendra Modi government will sell part of its stake in Life Insurance Corporation (LIC), launching an IPO. Amid public fears over the PMC Bank scam, FM Nirmala Sithraman said in her budget speech that the insurance cover for each depositor will be increased from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 5 lakh. The government has also relaxed fiscal deficit for FY20 to 3.8 percent of the GDP and to 3.5 percent for FY21.
In its Economic Survey 2020 released on Friday, the Union government predicted that the economic growth would pick up to 6.0% to 6.5% in the fiscal year beginning April 1, but warned that it may have to exceed its deficit target to revive growth.