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Budget session was unending
August, 08th 2009

The just concluded budget session was "highly satisfying" for the opposition but an unending "embarrassment" for the Congress-led UPA government, BJP leader L.K. Advani said on Friday while specifically pointing to the India-Pakistan joint statement and the budget.

The leader of the opposition told reporters after the conclusion of the budget session that never had he seen a newly elected government bungle so much in its first two months.

"For us, this session has been highly satisfying. For the government, it has been an unending row of embarrassment," Advani said.

"Never in my long parliamentary career have I seen a newly elected government bungling so badly in the first two months of its existence," the Bharatiya Janata Party leader, who was the party's prime ministerial candidate during the April-May elections, added.

The government had failed to usher in any confidence in the economy with its budget, Advani said, describing the India-Pakistan joint statement issued in Egypt last month as the "biggest bungle".

"The biggest bungle of the UPA government in its first two months was the Indo-Pak joint statement issued after the meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Yousaf Gilani in Sharm el-Shaikh in Egypt last month."

He said the joint statement contained two of the "worst blunders" committed in India's diplomatic history. "Firstly, it delinks or debrackets the bilateral dialogue process from Pakistani government's action to stop terrorist attacks on India. Secondly, it tacitly holds India guilty of fomenting trouble in Balochistan."

Discussing the union budget, he said it was "lacklustre, lacking in vision and direction". He added that it had failed to invoke enthusiasm in any section of the society. "It could not stimulate recovery in an economy that has suffered a serious slowdown," the former deputy prime minister said.

To make things worse, it sent "confusing signals about the government's commitment to economic reforms, compelling both the prime minister and the finance minister to make damage control statements".

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