The Union Budget for 2018-’19 announced on Thursday kept much of its focus on rural plans and easing the agrarian crisis ahead of general elections next year. The headline schemes included a healthcare insurance proposal for the poor and an increase in the minimum support price for crops.

In the midst of it all, India’s salaried class felt woefully ignored. There was no relief in the income tax slabs and the standard deduction of Rs 40,000 on taxable income that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced fell far short of expectations.
Besides, this was offset by the increase in 1% education and health cess, which will increase taxes overall.

The Long Term Capital Gains Tax on equity and an additional dividend distribution tax on equity mutual funds came as an added blow.

Adding salt to the wounds was the fact that the salaries of the president, vice president and governors were increased, while MPs were guaranteed an increment every five years to keep up with inflation.

Feeling left out, the self-proclaimed middle class – who are much closer to the top of the Indian social and economic pyramid than they dare to admit – turned to humour and Twitter for solace.

For those who were left speechless by the disappointment, GIFs and screen grabs from Bollywood movies came to the rescue.

But there is always light at the end of the tunnel, as one Twitter user pointed out.