Chennai: Union Minister of State for Finance and Shipping Pon Radhakrishnan taunted DMK president M. K. Stalin for criticising the State budget as "useless" and said the budget has been framed for all the people including him.
"What did the DMK give to the people when they presented the budget? They gave match box and TV sets and fooled the people," is how Mr. Radhakrishnan angrily reacted to the DMK leader's remark on the State budget for 2019-20 presented on Friday in the Assembly by Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam. With the State budget giving focus to the centrally sponsored schemes for farmers, unorganised sector and health insurance, the Minister came out in support of the ruling AIADMK's budget in the election year.
When reporters sought his views on Mr. Stalin's remark that the budget is "useless for the people of the State," Mr. Radhakrishnan shot back, "the budget has been framed for him too." Speaking to reporters in Agastheeswaram in Kanyakumari district on Saturday after inspecting the site for the BJP rally to be addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Feb. 19, Mr. Radhakrishnan hailed the budget and said it has numerous schemes for farmers. "The announcement on constructing concrete houses for the cyclone Gaja-hit families will instil faith among the people," he said.
The Minister said PM's visit to Tiruppur would invigorate the people of Tamil Nadu. Asked if Mr. Modi would announce the alliance when he addresses the rally on Sunday, Mr. Radhakrishnan replied, "Alliance will be announced after talks have been concluded…our national leaders are holding talks directly with the regional parties in Tamil Nadu." All parties which join the BJP-led NDA would be "respected as eq-uals."
He took a dig at the Congress for its "spectacular" growth after 1969 and remarked, "The party that can't even lift the hand (also the party symbol of Congress) now is dreaming of coming to power at the Centre. They can't even imagine coming to power in Tamil Nadu."
The vote share of Congress has reduced to the size of Anacin — to four per cent from 44 per cent, he added....