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Budget 2016-17 'balanced', 'pragmatic': RBI Deputy Governor S.S. Mundra

Reuters     March 1, 2016

Budget 2016-17 unveiled by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday is "pragmatic" and "balanced," and its focus on the rural economy and job creation will bring long-term benefits, Reserve Bank of India Deputy Governor S.S. Mundra said.

Mundra's reaction, during an interaction with reporters on Tuesday, marks the first public comment from a senior RBI official on the budget.

"It is a pragmatic budget, particularly if you look at the fiscal consolidation road map," Mundra told reporters on the sidelines of a conference.

"The thrust on rural economy and job creation is very positive for the long term benefit. The social and public investment thrust should also be very important. Overall it's a balanced budget and (with) a very long term impact."

Mundra said the government's plan to inject 250 billion rupees ($3.67 billion) into state-owned lenders in the year starting in April "would work for the time being", but added it should be open to making more such injections.

"If the need arises, government will find a way," he said.

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