Hyderabad: All India Congress Committee (AICC) Spokesperson Dr. Dasoju Sravan has described the Union Budget, presented by Interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal, as highly disappointing for Telangana State.
Addressing a press conference in New Delhi on Saturday, Sravan said that Friday’s budget was no different from previous budgets of BJP-led NDA Government during the last five years. He alleged that BJP Government has denied Telangana its due share in Central Taxes and adequate financial assistances for various schemes.
He said despite several requests, the Centre has failed to provide funds for Mission Kakatiya, Mission Bhagiratha, Kaleshwaram Project or other schemes for the welfare of farmers. He said that the Centre has even ignored the recommendations made by NITI Ayog proposing funds for various projects being implemented in Telangana.
Sravan said that the State Government had sought Rs. 24,000 crore for Mission Kakatiya, Rs. 34,000 crore for irrigation and drinking water projects and Rs. 10,000 crore out of Rs. 80,000 crore being spent on Kaleshwaram Project. However, these pleas were completely ignored. The Centre did not even grant National Status for the Kaleshwaram project.
The Congress leader said that the BJP Government did not respond to the requests made by Telangana seeking Rs. 39,000 crore in 2018-19 budget. Other requests seeking funds for infrastructure like roads, minority education, Gurukul Schools or higher education was ignored.
Sravan said that the Modi Government did not fulfill the promises made with Telangana State in the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act at the time of bifurcation.
He said the then Congress-led UPA Government had announced various sops for Telangana including a Railway Coach Factory in Qazipet, Bayyaram Steel Plant and setting up of national institutions. None of these promises have been fulfilled, he said.
Sravan said that Modi has cheated the farmers and unemployed youth across the country. He said people who had lot of expectations from this budget only faced disappointment.
Sravan said that Piyush Goyal’s budget for not an ‘Vote On Account’, but ‘Budget Only for Votes’ aimed at cheating the people one last time. He said that the Modi Government has insulted farmers by making meager allocations.
He said that the BJP Government owes an explanation over its failure to implement the recommendations of Swaminathan Commission which wanted the MSP to be at least 50% more than the weighted average cost of production.
He said no efforts were made to support the farmers during the last five years. However, just in view of elections, he said that the BJP Government is promising Direct Cash Transfer of Rs. 6,000 for small and marginal farmers which is extremely negligible and would not help the farmers in any way.
He said there was no mention of rising prices of seeds and fertilizers every year. Further, the Centre did not propose anything to deal with the supply of spurious seeds and fertilizers.
By not giving proper MSP, the Modi Government has cause immense damage to nearly 2.5 lakh crore farmers across the country. Tenant farmers, who constitute nearly 60% of farming community, have been ignored and Rs. 6,000 investment support has been announced for farmers holding less than 5 acres of land.
He said while 1.15% of GDP was spent on agriculture in 2018-19, this time it has been reduced to just 1.08%. He said Modi Government must waive off crop loans of all farmers to prove its sincerity towards farmers.
Sravan alleged that the GST had a very negative impact on the farming community and led to an increase in prices of seeds, fertilizers and pesticides.
Similarly, the rising fuel prices cause huge losses to the farmers. For instance, the diesel price in May 2014 was Rs. 56.71 which has no increased to Rs. 70 per litre. A bag of 50 kg DAP Fertilizers used to cost only Rs. 1075 in 2014 while now it cost Rs. 1450.
Sravan pointed out that the Modi Government has waived off Rs. 3.5 lakh crore debts of 15 rich industrialists. However, on an average, it gave only Rs. 17 to each farmer in the budget for 2019-20. (INN)