P.Chidambaram quoting from Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations,
“Main Hoon Na (I am here),” said Finance Minister P Chidambaram employing an unusual repartee of three Hindi words in the 110 minute-long budget speech on Thursday to impart a sense of confidence across the country on the UPA government’s commitment to economic reforms with a human face.
Sharply in contrast with the earthy humour and wit that marked Railway Minister Lalu Prasad’s Rail Budget presentation, Chidambaram went about with his task in his characteristic business style evoking vehement protests from the Opposition ranks only when he referred to the recent poll verdict as a “vote for Sonia Gandhi” and announced a Rs 3,225 crore (Rs 32.25 billion) package for Bihar.
In perhaps his only witty departure from the prepared text, the bespectacled, dhoti-clad lawyer-turned-politician compared himself to Pip, hero of Charles Dickens’ literary classic Great Expectations and quoted his famous lines, “My redemption lies in good deeds and not in good words” as he announced that nobody with a taxable income up to Rs 1 lakh will be required to pay income tax anymore.
Turning philosophic in the concluding remarks of the UPA government’s maiden Budget, he quoted from Tamil Saint Poet Thiruvalluvar, saying: “Aran Izhukkathu Allavai Neeki Maran Izhukka Maanam Udayathu Arasu,” (They are good rulers who observe ethics, commit no crime and walk the path of honour and courage).
“If we bring thought and passion to our governance, and walk the path of courage, we can make the future happen. And this century will be India’s century,” he asserted as he commended the Budget to the House.
– Courtesy of rediff
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