Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday made a reference to Harappan-era seals in her Budget speech, claiming one of them contained the word “sreni”. Social media users soon pointed out that the Harappan script had not yet been deciphered.
Trade and commerce have existed in India since the Harappan civilisation, Sitharaman said in her speech to drive home the point how entrepreneurship has always been there in the country. She referred to the Indus Valley Civilisation as the “Saraswati Sindhu Civilisation”, and claimed that the word “Sreni [guilds]” was written on a Harappan seal.
The Indus Valley Civilisation, or the Harappan Civilisation, is believed to have existed around 2000 BCE.
Mocking the gaffe, some Twitter users asked if the finance minister has been able to decipher the Harappan script, while a few other users called out the government’s ignorance. Here are a few reactions: