HYDERABAD: Amos Lentin, a 40-year-old graduate, who started as a salesman, has now been working for an MNC, which is a BPO, for a decade. Amos’ current annual income is Rs 4.4 lakh. He is married to Shailaja, who did her BA, B. Ed and was working till she gave birth to their first child. The couple has two children, both studying in a private school.
Life for Mr Lentin and his family is tough. Asked about his expectations from the Union Budget 2020, he said he wanted the prices of petrol and essential commodities to come down, as they are the biggest burden for middle-class families. The Lentins live in Hydershakote, paying a rent of Rs 8,000 per month.
They opted for this area because it is on outskirts of Hyderabad and rentals are much more reasonable than in the city. The couple has one dream – to give their children the best of education, which, they say, is quite expensive. Mr Lentin is trying hard to go abroad, the only motive being good money, so that his family can afford a comfortable living.
As the month starts, the family spends around Rs 15,000 on groceries, milk, electricity, cooking gas and water bills, apart from Rs 3,000 on petrol for his bike and Rs 6,000 on monthly EMIs for household electronics that they have bought. Jennifer, the elder daughter studying in Class 6, is the class topper. She wants to become a doctor. Son Joel is in Class 3, likes cricket and is a crazy fan of Virat Kohli. The family spends Rs 8,000 on school fee.
A major grievance of Mr Lentin is that he cannot afford to take his family on a vacation. Whatever he earns lets them have a hand-to-mouth existence. The salesperson feels the cost of living in the country has become too expensive in recent times. It is tough living for a common man. Even the television cable connection, which was Rs 150 earlier, is now Rs 350. The salesperson wants the government to provide health benefits for middle class also, so that they too can avail healthcare benefits. Since they are salaried class, it becomes scary when a family person falls ill.
Mr Lentin wants the government to announce a separate policy for middle class, so that they can survive....