The Congress on Thursday warned the Bharatiya Janata Party of protests inside and outside Parliament if the Centre presents a full budget on February 1, instead of a vote on account. Congress leader Manish Tewari, addressing a press conference, said such a step would be a “blatant violation of Constitutional propriety”, as the government’s term will end just 56 days into the 2019-’20 financial year, The Hindu reported.
Tewari was reacting to media reports that suggested that the Centre will present a full budget instead of an interim one, despite its term ending in four months. Lok Sabha elections are likely to be held in April and May.
From 2017, the Centre has brought the budget forward to February 1. It has also merged the railway budget with the Union budget.
“If the National Democratic Alliance-BJP government presents a full Budget, then it will be a flagrant violation of Parliamentary conventions and norms followed over seven decades,” Tewari told reporters. “The Modi government has neither the electoral mandate nor electoral legitimacy to present its sixth full Budget in five years.” He claimed that the Centre was seeking to hide the “economic mismanagement” during its tenure.
Congress leader Anand Sharma tweeted: “The government presented five full budgets and can only present a vote on account. For a Budget for 12 months, the government must have the tenure left. A tenure of three months and a budget for one year is bizarre and unprecedented. The intent is questionable.”
He called the government’s purported move a “desperate attempt to make grandiose announcements and hoodwink the people in utter disregard of Constitution”.