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Finance Minister’s ‘aam aadami’ budget

As expected, the Finance Minister (editorial, An aam aadami budget”, July 7) has presented a pro-farmer, pro-rural and pro-poor budget and carried forward various developmental schemes with more money and vigour. The emphasis on agricultural credit, fertilizers, subsidies, etc, will give an impetus to the agricultural growth that is the backbone of the Indian economy.

The relief given to income tax payees as well as the abolition of fringe benefit tax have been welcomed, although the income tax exemption limit should have been raised further. The announcement of “one rank, one pension” is appreciable as the ex-servicemen have been agitating for the same for a long time. Although officers have not been included presently, it is hoped that they will also be covered in due course to remove a major grievance of the ex-servicemen.

All in all, the budget proposals are a fine effort to improve the lot of have-nots and hopefully will usher in an inclusive growth. Stress on infrastructure development is likely to give a boost to the country’s development.

Brig H S SANDHU (retd), Panchkula


The budget presented by the Finance Minister is highly disappointing and is likely to make the life of the common man still more difficult. The budget is not directed towards the welfare of the public.  All sections of society need food and clothing, as these are items of daily use. But people would have to pay more for these at the cost of their other important needs. A marginal reduction in the cost of LCD TV is of no consequence as a very small percentage of households can afford to purchase it.

For reasons of their advanced age and poor health, senior citizens find it very difficult to file income tax returns. They should have been altogether exempted from income tax. The luxuries being enjoyed by the present generation are the consequences of their hard work. In view of the high cost of living and skyrocketing prices of essential commodities, the income tax exemption limit for government and other employees should have been increased to at least Rs 3 lakh.

The expenditure on governance has increased manifold but no efforts have been made in the budget to reduce wasteful expenses. There is a need to revise the budget to reduce the hardships of the people.   

Dr R K SHARMA, Faridabad

Statue mania

The editorial, Statues don’t vote: Mayawati in stone is larger than life (July 1) was both telling and timely. No doubt, Ms Mayawati is trying to foist her so-called greatness on common people of Uttar Pradesh by raising her own statues in a big way. It is a graceless, narcissist and an objectionable exercise in a democratic country like ours. Quite deplorably, she remains indifferent and unconcerned about those landless rural Dalits who continue migrating to far off places, in search of petty jobs.

I think the editorial aptly summarises the “significance” of her statues, “There is no way that they come in handy in ameliorating the lot of the suffering millions of a state where development has yet to register. Also, statues are not eligible to vote”.



The Supreme Court has rightly issued a show cause notice to the Uttar Pradesh government for using public money for installing statues of Chief Minister, Ms Mayawati. This is flagrant misuse of public money. It clearly shows that Ms Mayawati is treating the state as her private property.

In a state where lakhs are fighting abject poverty, hunger, insanitation, deadly diseases, shortage of potable water, caste discrimination, police atrocities and power brokers’ wrath, building such memorials amounts to misanthropy. Her unethical self-glorification drive and morbid narcissism must stop. A law should be enacted in both houses of Parliament against such self-glorification. The amount thus spent should be deducted from the state’s share of central grants.

O P COUSHIK, Kurukshetra


Mayawati’s statue mania is a complete waste of public money. Instead, it could be used for eradicating poverty and building public utility services, particularly medical and educational facilities for the welfare of the people of the state.


Rein in arrogant leaders

The editorial Not above the law (July 6) reflects a deep concern over the arrogant behaviour of our elected representatives. The cases of elected representatives abusing, threatening, misbehaving and assaulting officers are on the rise. The so-called leaders have no respect for the rule of law. They consider themselves above the law and believe that they are not answerable.

An apology from Congress MP M Jagannath does not absolve him of his unpardonable act. The arrogance on the part of ministers, MPs and MLAs is shocking and cannot be accepted in a democratic nation. Political parties must bridle their errant leaders, or else the rule of law must prevail.

Capt S K DATTA, Abohar



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