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Budget 2024: Centre convenes all-party meeting, told floor leaders it is 'willing to discuss every issue'

The Budget session will commence with the address of President Droupadi Murmu on January 31 and subject to the exigencies of government business, the session may conclude on February 9.

Arushi Jaiswal Edited By: Arushi Jaiswal @JaiswalArushi New Delhi Updated on: January 30, 2024 16:58 IST
Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh with Union Ministers
Image Source : PTI Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh with Union Ministers Piyush Goyal and Pralhad Joshi, Union Ministers of State Arjun Ram Meghwal and V Muraleedharan during an all-party meeting

Budget 2024: Ahead of the Budget Session of the Parliament, the government held a meeting of floor leaders of different parties today (January 30) at the Parliament Library Building. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi held the meeting with the floor leaders of political parties in Parliament.

It is a common practice before every parliamentary session for leaders of various political parties to outline the issues they intend to raise, while the government provides a preview of its agenda and seeks their cooperation.

'Willing to discuss every issue'

During the meeting, the government told floor leaders of various parties that it was ready to discuss every issue in the upcoming Budget session of Parliament, reported news agency PTI.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Joshi described the interaction as "very cordial" and stated that the government was prepared to discuss every issue during the brief session.

Defence Minister and Deputy Leader in the Lok Sabha, Rajnath Singh, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Joshi and his deputy Arjun Ram Meghwal represented the government at the meet.

Congress' K Suresh, TMC's Sudip Bandopadhyay, DMK's T R Baalu, Shiv Sena's Rahul Shewale, Samajwadi Party's S T Hasan, JD(U)'s Ram Nath Thakur and TDP's Jayadev Galla were among the leaders present at the meeting at the Parliament House complex.

Congress MP Pramod Tiwari, who represented the Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, said he raised the issue of the "violent attack" on the Bharat Jodo Yatra led by Rahul Gandhi in Assam and the state government's curbs on it.

An "unwritten dictatorship" prevails in the country, he said and accused the central government of misusing probe agencies such as the CBI and the ED to target opposition leaders such as Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren and RJD supremo Lalu Prasad. Tiwari said he raised these issues after consulting opposition parties.

Budget session

The session will begin with the address of President Droupadi Murmu on Wednesday (January 31). This session, scheduled from January 31 to February 9, will be relatively short. 

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is set to present an interim budget on February 1, ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Given that it is an election year, she will present an interim budget, commonly known as a "vote-on-account." A comprehensive budget will be presented after the new cabinet is formed subsequent to the Lok Sabha elections in 2024.

According to a press release, the Union Budget for 2023–24 will be presented in a paperless format. All 14 Union Budget documents, including the Annual Financial Statement, Demand for Grants, Finance Bill, etc., as mandated by the Constitution, will be accessible through the "Union Budget Mobile App."

The initiative aims to provide Members of Parliament (MPs) and the general public with hassle-free access to budget documents using a user-friendly digital platform. The mobile app is bilingual (English and Hindi) and can be downloaded on both Android and iOS platforms.

(With agencies input)

Also Read: Budget 2024: From briefcase to 'bahi khata', here's how budget presentations have evolved

Also Read: Nirmala Sitharaman equals record of former PM Morarji Desa, to present sixth straight budget

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