Reacting to the Union budget, DMK President M Karunanidhi on Monday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi seems to have "passed the exam as of now" though the absence of expected income-tax concessions has led to a "big disappointment" among the salaried class.
"The budget presented by the Modi-led government has no new tax concessions. While there were big expectations on increasing the income-tax slab, no such thing has been announced. This has led to big disappointment among the tax paying middle classes and salaried persons," he said.
The DMK president referred to a slew of announcements made in various sectors including agriculture and infrastructure among others even as he pointed out that inflation had come down.
"Prime Minister Modi has said that the budget was his exam. Whether he had scored hundred out of hundred and come out completely successful can be said only after the impact and change the budgetary announcements made by (Finance Minister Arun) Jaitley create following their implementation."
"However, it appears that Prime Minister Modi has passed the examination as of now," the former chief minister said.
Addressing school students in his 'Mann ki Baat' programme yesterday, Modi had said: "Friends, your examinations are starting. I too have an examination tomorrow. The country's 125 crore people are going to take my examination," he had said referring to the budget.
PMK founder leader S Ramadoss welcomed the impetus given to education, agriculture and rural development but rued that the tax paying salaried class did not get any sops.
MDMK founder Vaiko said the budget did not meet people's expectations and alleged NDA was trying to 'corporatise' the farming sector, adding allocation to it was not sufficient.
"It is contradictory that while the government has announced promoting GM crops, it has today proposed to give a fillip to organic farming," he said.
While there were a few proposals that were welcome, including helping SC/ST entrepreneurs and tax exemption for equipent meant for kidney dialysis, the budget has not "met people's expectations," he said.