Budget reactions – industry Captains Bengal

ST Bureau ; Kolkata, 1 February : Heartily welcoming today’s Union Budget Proposals for 2020-21, and describing it as ‘balanced in a present tight rope situation’, Captains of several industries in Eastern India here today gave full credit to the government for turning its main focus on the issue of unemployment and targeting to  increase the country’s GDP growth to 10 per cent from around 5 per cent now.

‘The Government  seems to have tried to focus on a steady growth of economy,while simultaneously targeting to minimise the problem of unemployment among the educated youth and doubling the income of farmers’, said Chandra Shekhar Ghosh, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Kolkata Headquartered  Bandhan Bank and Chairman , Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) ,Eastern Region.

Such efforts should be hailed in the present tight rope condition of economy, he pointed out Speaking this afternoon after the presentation of Budget by Union Finance minister Nirmala Sitaraman,the noted Banker said it was not only a ‘Good Visionary Budget’,but also aimed at bringing more money into the pockets of common men in terms of huge tax relief for almost all taxpayers .

Referring to the Finance minister’s plan to create a  ‘clean and robust banking sector’ through merger and additional government funds to recapitalise them,Ghosh also welcomed Sitaraman’s announcement about the setting up of a ‘robust mechanism’ to monitor the performance of all banks and take them out from the burden of huge NPA .

Moreover,her announcement to increase the limit of  each depositor’s insurance coverage in the bank from Rs one lakh to Rs 5 lakh, would bring in more confidence among the people about the banking sector as a whole, Ghosh pointed out.

When his attention was drawn towards the brief announcement of the Finance minister about her plan to start a disinvestment programme in profit making public sector Life Insurance Corporation of India(LIC) through the IPO route, Ghosh was of the opinion that it was expected to do good for the industry because it was likely to help clear the doubts about the current asset valuation of  the country’s largest insurance player and that too in a transparent manner, like through the Initial Public Offering (IPO).

Also expressing similar views and welcoming most of the budget proposals, despite having limited resources in government coffer,Sanjay Budhia,Managing Director of Rs 1500 crores Patton International Limited and Chairman CII Committee on Exports, said the announcement of releasing  new Corporate bonds for foreign companies would encourage more investment into Indian companies from abroad besides bringing more money from large number of Indian diaspora  in foreign countries.

‘We are also looking forward to her ambitious target of reaching 10 per cent GDP growth by next year from only around 5 per cent now’,Budhia said but expressed reservations about the growth of fiscal deficit to 3.8 per cent this year from 3.5 per cent last year.

About the government plan for market borrowing of Rs 5.36 lakh crores, he said  since it would surpass last year’s figure of Rs 4.99 lakhs crores, there would be huge pressure on the government to maintain its all commitments.

Among others who also shared their views about today’s budget with HS were Ravi Poddar,Past Chairman of CII  and President  Ravi Auto,Rajan Vaswani,Chairman Eastern Engineering Limited and Sandip Kumar,CMD Tata Metalics Limited of the Tata Group.

Underscoring the urgent need for pumping in more money into the growth of manufacturing sector,all of them also  hailed the government decision to set up new industries for making world class mobile phones to off shoot the Chinese and Korean competition besides establishing India as one of the largest global players.

Sitaraman’s aim to provide Rs 2.83 lakh crores for the moribund agricultural sector to help doubling the income of farmers was also a step in the right direction,they said in unison but wanted strict monitoring of the entire fund well spent as India currently ranked 52 among the most corrupted  nations,they pointed out.