In his reply to Leader of the Opposition Pritam Singh’s clarification that WP has put up four levers of revenue to consider where additional revenues can come from, Transport Minister S Iswaran said that arguments about different sources of revenue have been well discussed in the main Budget Debate. He then highlighted the ministry’s effort to balance quality service, affordability, and financial sustainability within its allocated budget.
“Intellectual rigour, intellectual honesty, the Leader appears to be imputing words. But whatever it is, I think you can’t have rigour without honesty. So let’s leave it as that.
But in terms of proposals I don’t intend to canvass again the arguments about different sources of revenue. I think they have been well discussed in the main Budget Debate on the Budget policies and so on.
However, I want to bring you back to this ministry’s budget because it is an important point. Every year we have to address this issue: of the balance between quality service, affordability, and financial sustainability. And this is not going to go away. So, when we make proposals, it cannot be that we make proposals that incur additional expenses under one head but then say that they will be all be taken care of in some macro level. Because we do need the discipline of also addressing how within that particular ministry’s budget, we are making every effort to find the appropriate balance.”