NEW DELHI, Feb 7 (PTI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said the recent Union Budget has something for every section of the society and asserted that the interests of the poor have been at the centre of every budget presented by his government.
Addressing the first BJP parliamentary party meeting after the budget was presented by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on February 1, Modi said no one is calling it a “chunavi budget” (budget influenced by polls) even though it was the last full-fledged one before next year’s Lok Sabha election. Overall development and the interests of every section of the society have driven the budget proposals, he added.
Even those who are ideologically opposed to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have welcomed the budget, Union minister Pralhad Joshi told reporters, quoting Modi’s speech to the MPs.
Asking the MPs to inform their constituents, including the poor and middle class, about the relevant aspects of the budget, Modi recalled his electoral experiences as the chief minister of Gujarat to say that when work is recognised by people, there is nothing like anti-incumbency, sources said.
Underscoring the wide acceptance of the budget, the prime minister said it is at times difficult to cater to everyone’s taste at a family function of merely 25 guests, but the budget proposals have managed to meet the expectations of different sections of the society in a country of more than 130 crore people.
Modi highlighted his involvement with budgets over the years, noting that he has been associated with about 25 of them, including as the Gujarat chief minister between 2001 and 2014, and 10 of them, including interim budgets, at the Centre.
The prime minister also asked the MPs, especially those from cities, to organise sports meets, noting that there is a view that youngsters in urban centres are not much involved in sports.
Modi has repeatedly asked lawmakers to organise sports meets.
In his address, Modi said India has organised about 20 G20-related meets at different places so far and foreign guests have appreciated their conduct.
He also spoke about a devastating earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria and noted that India is providing all possible assistance. Modi also recalled a 2001 earthquake in Gujarat, noting the scale of the tragedy and how he can relate to the situation in these countries.