How and why pre-election budgets are predictably similar

10 days ago The New Indian Express

To twist the first line of Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina: "All pre-election budgets are alike; every broken promise is broken in its own way." Jaswant Singh, P Chidambaram and Arun Jaitley were no different while reading their pre-election budget speeches. But one striking similarity, barring Arun Jaitley in 2018, becomes immediately discernible: looming global economic uncertainties and headwinds. Two terms -- farmers and agriculture -- have been invoked so often in budgets since independence that they have become reflexive chants for finance ministers. Jaswant Singh, P Chidambaram and Arun Jaitley were no different while reading their pre-election budget speeches.
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