Union Budget 2021: NITI Aayog, Ministers shower praise, WHO lauds healthcare allocation

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February 1, 2021 3:39 PM

Union Budget 2021 India: Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan whose ministry is one of the biggest beneficiaries of this year's annual budget said that FM Sitharaman put health as the topmost pillar of the country and hiked the budget by 137 percent as compared to last year which is in itself a great achievement.

Union Finance Minister Sitharaman in her budget speech announced several road infrastructure projects in the states that are slated to go to polls this year including West Bengal, Assam, Kerala among others.

Indian Union Budget 2021-22: Minutes after the Finance Minister wrapped up her Union Budget speech, reactions to the first budget of the decade started pouring in from across all quarters. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh while congratulating his cabinet colleague Sitharaman said that people were not expecting such an ambitious budget especially after the government had in the previous year announced major announcements five times in the form of mini budgets.

Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan whose ministry is one of the biggest beneficiaries of this year’s annual budget said that FM Sitharaman put health as the topmost pillar of the country and hiked the budget by 137 percent as compared to last year which is in itself a great achievement.

Reacting to a whopping 137 percent increase in the Health budget of the central government, Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia said that the increase reflects the government commitment to fight the Covid-19 pandemic from the front. She also said that the move will also go a long way in building better health systems.

However, the opposition led by the Congress remained unimpressed with the budget and said that contrary to the expectations of unprecedented measures in the Covid-19 times, the government has presented an ordinary budget. Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury also criticised the government by saying that the government was aiming at finding “a road to vote” by announcing schemes in several poll bound states. Chowdhury further said that the government had also failed to support the poor by announcing any direct transfer scheme. Union Finance Minister Sitharaman in her budget speech announced several road infrastructure projects in the states that are slated to go to polls this year including West Bengal, Assam, Kerala among others.

NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar remarked that all sections of the economy had huge expectations from the Finance Minister and she has been able to fulfil all of them. Kumar who is the vice chairman of the nation’s highest planning body NITI Aayog said that the budget is aimed towards accelerating the growth of the economy.

Another heavyweight from the NITI Aayog, CEO Amitabh Kant showered praise on the Union budget and said that in addition to giving a direction towards growth, the budget also sets the blueprint of the economy for the coming 3-4 years. Pointing out that the government has stressed on boosting infrastructure and asset monetisation, Kant said that the moves reflect the positive attitude of the government towards promoting the private sector.

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