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22nd March 2002 - Page 2



Our lion hearted Finance Minister, Mr. Yashwant Sinha, has taken a sudden U turn from last years dream budget to a bold and tight budget.

This time he has been especially relentless on the 5 Lakh plus income earners. Almost all savings incentives have been removed for them, and the 1-5 Lakh income earners need to pay double the amount they paid last to reap the same benefits. All this is topped with a fantastic surcharge which Mr. Sinha adds every year with a new pretext. Earlier it was the earthquake stricken Gujarat and now it is the potential need for defense equipment.

The objective of the budget is to pull down all those who have reached up. In times of recession where even executives are sweating over their jobs such a budget is not what most people would have anticipated. Industry which is well dug into a recession had expected a boost to stimulate demand which undoubtedly has not occurred. This budget can only lead to further dawning of a slowdown on the economy. 


Initiatives on the infrastructure and power sector augur well for the economy. But these are just a few favorable areas. 
Great tension at the borders, the lowest economic growth rate since 1990, elections in four significant states, has affected the FMís line of thought. He has only rectified his flaws from last year without adding its positive aspects.

It is true that Mr. Sinha has stuck to the reforms of the 90s but it is time now take these reforms a step forward and bring in fresh second-generation reforms. 

Ritwick Ghosh 



In the state of Pennsylvania, it is illegal to sleep on top of a refrigerator outdoors. 

In the same state, you may not catch a fish with your hands. In fact, you may not catch a fish by any body part except the mouth. In the state of Idaho, it was until recently illegal to fish on a camels back. However this Ďpopularí sport has now been legalized.


Although its quite a statement,
Well, it happens to be true.
The best friend I ever had,
I'm glad to say, is you.

You are there if I should need you,
And you never turn away.
I know I can depend on you,
At any time of day.

We've had our ups and downs,
As nearly everybody does.
But problems never lasts for long,
With special friends like us.

Some people have so many friends,
With whom they spend their time.
But no-one has a best friend,
Who's as wonderful as mine.
So thanks for always being there,
Your friendship is strong and true.
And I just want to let you know, 
I'm always there for you.
Iím glad I found you,
Someone in this great big world,
I found my way to you,
My friend across the computer lines,
My heart, my soul, thatís you.

You try to make me smile,
With the mail you send my way.
You never fail to drop in a line,
Each and everyday.

Whenever I have hurried home,
With something, I must share.
I find it just so comforting,
That you are always there.

Encouragement you give me,
And a friendship that is true.
I'm glad my soul while reaching out, 
Found a friend in you.

Hemant Gupta

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