Chandigarh, Jun 28 (PTI) Opposition parties on Tuesday targeted the AAP-led government in Punjab over its maiden budget, calling it “directionless” and claiming that it “betrayed” the women of the state as no funds were earmarked for the monthly allowance scheme for them.
Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema on Monday presented the state budget for 2022-23, providing 300 units of free electricity to households from July 1, setting up of 117 Mohalla Clinics and upgrading 100 schools as ‘schools of eminence’ in the state among other proposals.
Participating in the discussion on the budget proposals on Tuesday, Akali MLA Manpreet Singh Ayali accused the Bhagwant Mann-led government of betraying women by reneging on its promise of giving Rs 1,000 per month to them.
“AAP had promised Rs 1,000 per month to all women before the state assembly polls. But there is no mention of this promise in the budget. It is a betrayal with women of the state,” said Ayali.
Ayali, who is the legislator from Dakha constituency in Ludhiana, asked the state government how it plans to raise revenue for funding its proposals made in the budget. He said that the goods and services tax compensation was going to end in June this year and its excise policy also “failed” to generate desired participation from liquor contractors.
Ayali also slammed the government for allegedly raising Rs 9,000 crore of debt in just three months into office.
Punjab BJP chief Ashwani Sharma said that the state budget which was presented on Monday failed to live up to the expectations of the people and called the budget “directionless”.
Punjab Congress chief Amrinder Singh Raja Warring, while participating in the budget discussion, targeted the state government for lifting quota from the sale of Indian Made Foreign Liquor in its recently announced excise policy.
He said this step will encourage smuggling of liquor from Punjab to other states.
He also questioned the state government’s projections of a 27 per cent rise in GST revenue and also said that the industry has expressed fear that the state government’s move of setting up a tax intelligence unit would harass the businessmen.
Cheema in the budget had announced establishing the tax intelligence unit which will equip the finance department to improve tax compliances under GST through taxpayer facilitation and communication.
Warring also targeted AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal over his announcement that Rs 20,000 crore would be generated from the sand mining sector and claimed that it was not possible.
“I will not come to the assembly if Rs 20,000 crore is generated from the sand mining,” said Warring.
Warring attacked the state government over a proposal of raising Rs 55,000 crore of additional debt and accused it of spending Rs 29 crore on advertisements in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh in the last three months. PTI CHS VSD RHL
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Source: The Print