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Customary halwa ceremony conducted, FM Sitharaman launches Budget app

Customary halwa ceremony conducted, FM Sitharaman launches Budget app
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Customary halwa ceremony conducted, FM Sitharaman launches Budget app

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Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur and senior finance ministry officials on January 23 participated in...

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur and senior finance ministry officials on January 23 participated in the halwa ceremony to kick-start the compilation of the Budget documents.

Sitharaman also launched the Union Budget Mobile thApp so that Members of Parliament (MPs) can access the digital versions of the document in the absence of hard copies.

This customary halwa ceremony marks the beginning of the "lock-in" period where finance ministry staff compile and print the documents in North Block. To contain the spread of COVID-19, this will be the first time since Independence that the Budget documents have not been printed.

"In an unprecedented initiative, Union Budget 2021-22 will be delivered in paperless form for the first time," the Ministry of Finance said in a statement.

"The mobile App facilitates complete access to 14 Union Budget documents, including the Annual Financial Statement (commonly known as Budget), Demand for Grants (DG), Finance Bill etc. as prescribed by the Constitution," the ministry said.

Finance Secretary Ajay Bhushan Pandey, Economic Affairs Secretary Tarun Bajaj, Financial Services Secretary Debasish Panda, DIPAM Secretary Tuhin Kanta Pandey, Expenditure Secretary TV Somanathan and Chief Economic Adviser K V Subramanian were also present at the halwa ceremony.

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