Leaders of the BJP-led ruling alliance lavished praise on the Union Budget with Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying it benefits every section of society and will boost growth but the Opposition scorned its populist push, calling it the saffron party's poll manifesto and election 'jumla'.
In an interview to CNBC-TV18, Martin Howell, bureau chief - South Asia, Reuters, Ravi Agrawal, managing editor of Foreign Policy; Alyssa Ayres, senior fellow at CFR, and Michael Kugelman, senior associate - South Asia at Wilson Center, shared their views on the interim Budget 2019.
Howell said, “It is a populist budget. It is a pre-election budget, clearly it is there to appeal to the down-beaten farm rural areas and to an extent to the lower middle class.”
Agrawal said, “It clearly is a populist budget. However, the Indian voters are not foolish. I think they also realise that this is the sixth budget that this government is presenting, they are going to ask strong questions about why some of these proposals have not seen the light of day before, why previous proposals have not worked out.”