Nirmala Sitharaman is only the second woman finance minister to present the Union Budget and it is, by all means, a litmus test for the senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) warrior today, as she makes her way to the Lok Sabha to present Budget 2019-20.
And as expected, the Sitharaman touch (read: no less than the Midas touch) has manifested itself at the start of the Budget proceedings.
Sitharaman posed for the shutterbugs with a red fabric folder -- a diversion from the age-old practice of carrying a regular maroonish briefcase.
For the unversed, posing for the shutterbugs with the Budget briefcase is a peculiar ritual that takes place right outside the Parliament on the Budget day.
What is a 'Budget Briefcase'?
The 'budget briefcase' contains the printed budget speech.
India and the Budget briefcase
On November 26, 1947, the then finance minister, RK Shanmukham Chetty, carried a leather bag when he presented Independent India's first ever budget.
Jawahar Lal Nehru carried a black briefcase in 1958. Former prime minister Manmohan Singh also carried a black briefcase when he delivered the iconic 'Epochal Budget' in the year 1991.
Piyush Goyal, who presented the interim Budget on February 1, 2019, carried a 'red briefcase'.
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