ANI Photo | Hardeep Puri hits back at Opposition’s criticism of Interim Budget, calls them “hollow”

Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri hit back at the opposition’s criticism of the Interim Budget, stating that 250 million people have been lifted out of multi-dimensional poverty in the last 10 years.
Earlier in the day, leaders of the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) said that there is “nothing” in the Union Interim Budget for the poor, women, and youth, while calling it a new “jumla.”
Hitting back, Puri told ANI, “This is a government that has had a fantastic record for ten years… 250 million people have been taken out of multi-dimensional poverty. This is a figure of which any country in the world will be proud.”
He also said, “Capital expenditure has also increased…We’ve achieved 10 times what we had promised…”
Lashing out at the opposition, Puri said, “They (the opposition) are saying that the government has not done anything; they are a hollow opposition. They have nothing to show.”
Shiv Sena (UBT) MP Priyanka Chaturvedi told ANI, “There is a huge difference between saying and doing, this is what we have been seeing for the last 10 years… There is nothing in it for the poor, women and youth. This budget has poured cold water on the expectations of the general public” she said.
Meanwhile, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman pegged the fiscal deficit target for 2024-25 at 5.1 percent of gross domestic product (GDP).
In 2023-24, the government pegged the fiscal deficit target for 2023-24 at 5.9 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP). Today, Sitharaman said that the fiscal deficit of 2023-24 was downwardly revised to 5.8 per cent.
The difference between total revenue and total expenditure of the government is termed as fiscal deficit. It is an indication of the total borrowings that may be needed by the government.
The government intends to bring the fiscal deficit below 4.5 per cent of GDP by the financial year 2025-26.
The government proposed to increase capital expenditure outlay by 11.1 per cent to Rs 11.11 lakh crore in 2024-25.
A capital expenditure, or capex, is used to set up long-term physical or fixed assets.
The Indian economy is projected to grow close to 7 per cent in the financial year 2024-25 which starts this April, said the Ministry of Finance in a review report.
India’s economy grew 7.2 per cent in 2022-23 and 8.7 per cent in 2021-22. The Indian economy is expected to grow 7.3 per cent in the current financial year 2023-24, remaining the fastest-growing major economy

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