Union budget has nothing to do with state polls: Gangwar

New Delhi [India], Jan. 7 : Minister of State for Finance, Santosh Kumar Gangwar on Saturday said that the Union budget has nothing to do with the state polls, adding that the Centre is trying to pass the budget by March 31 for the systematic flow of the work.

"Earlier the entire process to pass the budget last until May and June and therefore in the first three months no new work could be started.

Therefore, we are trying to make it systematic so that the budget can be passed by March 31 and we can work according to the new budget," Gangwar told ANI.

He further said that the Election Commission of India (ECI) understands the long process of passing the budget and therefore has declared the elections date keeping this in view.

The ECI, earlier in the day, wrote to Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha, seeking Centre's stand on the opposition's plea to postpone the budget presentation to a day after March 8, the last date of polling in Uttar Pradesh.

As per the ECI sources, this has been done by the Election Commission as per normal procedure. The ECI's decision comes a day after a delegation of the opposition parties met all three Election Commissioners, Naseem Zaidi, OP Rawat and AK Joti demanding the date for budget presentation be shifted till after the elections get over.

The Congress, Trinamool Congress (TMC) and others said they were not in favour of February 1 as the start of the budget session.

Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said the negation has been put forward as it would lead to biased elections, which are against the constitution and democracy, adding further that they have no problem with any date post elections.

TMC leader Derek O'Brien resonated the same, saying the Centre can present the budget after March 8, once the elections get over.

Source: ANI