West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra began his 2012-13 Budget speech by blaming the previous Left Front government for the dire straits of state finances. He said: “In a dozen years, debt grew by a phenomenal 486 per cent. In per capita terms, the debt was the largest in the country. Tragically, each child born in West Bengal is carrying a debt of Rs 21,000 on his or her head.”

The expectation from Mitra, a trained economist and also former secretary general of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce of India, was high when he presented the Budget. Read more