Former finance minister P Chidambaram slammed the Budget 2018 presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Parliament on Thursday and said the proposals should have been bold and radical, but they are a big let down. Addressing a press conference in New Delhi, the senior Congress leader said the finance minister has failed the fiscal deficit test. “All deficits have crossed the budget estimates. No measure to boost exports. Promise of Rs 5 lakh per family for secondary and tertiary healthcare a big jumla,” he said.
The former finance minister said the fiscal deficit limit of 3.2 per cent in 2017-18 had been breached and was estimated at 3.5 per cent.
Even as Jaitley reiterated the government’s commitment to the welfare of farmers saying that the emphasis is to generate higher income for farmers, Chidambaram said there’s nothing to indicate that farmers income would rise and their distress would continue.
He added: “This was the last budget of this government. I should add, ‘thank god for that’.”