GUWAHATI, March 10 � Describing the State Budget presented in the Legislative Assembly today as �poll-oriented� and populist, Opposition parties said it lacks vision and fails to address the problem of resource generation.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the Assembly session, AIUDF Legislature Party leader Hafiz Bashir Ahmed Kasimi said the Budget speech has laid bare the fact that the State government cannot undertake any development-related activities without Central funding.
�It is a totally poll-oriented Budget. It just makes announcements for schemes. But there is no effort for resource allocation,� Kasimi said.
He said details regarding spending meant for various heads are missing from the document.
�There is nothing new to tackle the problems of flood and erosion, which are the biggest menaces. There is nothing for minorities and weaker sections. It is not a people-oriented Budget but only poll-oriented,� Kasimi said.
Phani Bhushan Choudhury, leader of the AGP Legislature Party, termed the Budget a �routine� one.
�There is nothing new or special in the Budget. It is a poll-oriented Budget. There is nothing for the common masses,� he said.
Choudhury said the Budget has made no mention of any projects or policies to help the State mobilise its own resources.
�For almost two years now sugar has not been distributed through PDS shops. The government has been talking of setting up a corporation to address the issue but no action has been taken. Many schemes were announced during last year�s Budget. What kind of progress have those schemes made? That is not reflected in today�s Budget,� he said.
The AGP leader said that the standard of living of the common people has not risen over the last few years and this Budget is also not likely to act as a major stimulant in this regard.
�Over the years we have noticed the State government keeping big Budget provisions which it later is not able to spend. This has become the trend,� said Choudhury.
The BJP also criticised the Budget presented by Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi in the Legislative Assembly.
�The Budget has been prepared keeping in mind the 2016 Assembly polls. It is intended to help the Congress cross the electoral barrier. This is the Gogoi government�s last full-fledged Budget and it has prepared the Budget with a view to preserving its vote bank,� said Jadhav Deka, BJP Legislature Party leader.
�The Budget will boomerang on them. In the coming fiscal, the government will fail. The State has tried to shift the blame to the Centre but the fact is that the State government has not been able to utilise Central funds and has not submitted utilisation certificates,� Deka said.
Pramila Rani Brahma, leader of the BPF Legislature Party, said, �It is a regular Budget. There is nothing new.�
She expressed doubts about the State government�s ability to fulfill all the Budget promises.