Mitra walks out of pre-Budget meet,cites ‘financial emergency’
A day after his party’s leader in Lok Sabha, Sudip Bandyopadhyay, was arrested by CBI, West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra on Wednesday staged an angry walkout from a pre-Budget meeting saying there was ‘financial emergency and ‘political environment of fear’ in the country.
Mitra, who was in full attendance at the two-day meeting of the GST Council chaired by Jaitley that ended on Wednesday, said the Union Budget had become a “meaningless” exercise after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his address to the nation on new year’s eve, made announcements similar to a Budget presentation.
He said that before walking out, he made the Union Finance Minister, who had called the meeting, hear the expectations of States on his fourth budget to be presented on February 1 and also make him aware of the “financial emergency” imposed by demonetisation and the job losses it has led to. “I wanted the Finance Minister to hear the reality on the ground, the financial emergency in the country, the political environment of fear all around,” he told reporters after emerging from the meeting.
The Trinamool Congress, he said, is on Wednesday demonstrating against “the political emergency that seems to have happened at every nook and corner on every matter.” Mitra also said currency demonetiation has led to closure of small industries and left hundreds jobless across the country, including the BJP-ruled States.