The much talked about first phase of the Budget session of parliament saw the government and the opposition in a combative mood. As the famers protests over the three farm laws continues and shows no signs of ending, Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his speech in parliament drove home a pertinent point to take on the opposition head on. While underlining that the farm laws are for the betterment of the farmers in the long run, Prime Minister Narendra Modi took a dig at the on- going protests.
Modi said it is important for the country to differentiate between ‘Andolanjeevis’ and ‘Andolankari’. Explaining he said, “I consider ‘Kisan Andolan’ to be holy. But, when ‘Andolanjeevis’ hijack ‘Pavitra Andolans’, showcase photos of those jailed for serious offences, does it serve any purpose? Not allowing toll plazas to work, destroying telecom towers-does it serve a Pavitra Andolan.” However, PM Modi’s jibe did not go down well with the opposition. Its former ally Shiv Sena was unhappy with the jibe > In the editorial of Shiv Sena’s mouthpiece Saamana pointed out that the BJP would not have witnessed such a meteoric rise if it had not held protests on several issues, including the Ram temple movement and inflation.
“Prime Minister Modi has made fun of the country’s agitations. The BJP continued its agitation from the emergency to the Ayodhya movement, from inflation to the removal of Article-370 from Kashmir. Had the Ram movement not happened, the BJP would not have been seen today. When PM Modi of that BJP ridicules protesters as ”andolanjeevi”, the freedom movement is also insulted,” it said.
Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi who spares no effort to attack the government on several issues from China, farmers national security caused a stir with his line – “Years ago there was a family planning slogan — hum do, hamare do (We two and ours two), but just like Corona has returned in another form, this slogan too has made a comeback. Today, four people run the country — hum do, hamare do.” The BJP has often described Rahul Gandhi as non- serious politician but each time Rahul Gandhi comments or tweets the government is forced to react.
The Union Budget had its first – digital presented by tab and paperless too The traditional ‘bahi khata’ became part of history. Sitharaman promised a budget like never before . Though she strongly defended her budget, former finance Minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram slammed the budget saying it was a let down like never before.
Shashi Tharoor , senior Congress leader too was scathing in his remarks on the the Union Budget 2021-22, saying, “The government has come out with a budget which deceives people with respect to the allocation in defence and health sectors. Lal Bahadur Shastri had said ‘Jai Jawan Jai Kisan’. The contribution of this budget is ‘Na Jawan na Kisan.” Later in his trademark tweet on the Union Budget 2021-22 , Tharoor wrote , This BJP Govt reminds me of the garage mechanic who told his client, “I couldn’t fix your brakes, so I made your horn louder”.
When the parliament the Lok Sabha resumes on March 8, it remains to be seen what new words come out in the exchange between the government and the opposition.