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BJP disappointed, Left angry over rail budget

Lalu's Railway Budget came in for scathing attack from the opposition as also several allies of the UPA government.

india Updated: Feb 24, 2006 17:30 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India

The Railway Budget came in for scathing attack from the opposition as also several allies of the ruling UPA with the BJP dubbing it as a "disappointing" exercise while the Left and the Samajwadi Party expressing anger over certain provisions.

The Left was angry over the East-West Freight Corridor going from Ludhiana to Sonnagar in Bihar as against Delhi to Kolkata announced by the Prime Minister earlier.

The Samajwadi Party, another key outside supporter of the UPA government, like the Left attacked Railway Minister Lalu Prasad for not providing even a single passenger train for Uttar Pradesh despite UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi hailing from there.

SP leaders Mohan Singh as also Ram Gopal Yadav said it was strange that Prasad while thanking Gandhi had totally "neglected" UP.

Mohan Singh said the way the Budget had been framed, it would work towards dividing India instead of uniting it. He said it was regrettable that Prasad's rail map has only three centres -- Patna, Chhappra and Chennai.

BJP's Ananth Kumar said the exercise was reflective of Prasad's politics "totally perverse and off the track". Party's Deputy Leader VK Malhotra dubbed the budget as very disappointing where there was nothing much about railway safety.

Iliyas Azmi of BSP adversely commented on Rail Minister's moves to take every major train to Patna and not doing anything for UP.

Mohan Singh said the employees' strength in the Railways had come down by three lakhs last year and moves at privatisation would bring jobs down further.

Salim was critical of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for failing to assuage the feelings of Left party members agitated over certain provisions in the budget.

Generally whenever there was an agitation in the House, the Leader of the House or the Leader of the Government should make an appeal, he said adding "it is not done and a new practice has started" to go ahead with the proceedings without paying heed to the protest.

First Published: Feb 24, 2006 17:19 IST