Bhajan Lal Sharma, during the presentation of the first budget in the government’s assembly, made it clear that in the coming days, there will be no shortage of sharp exchanges between the government and the opposition within the assembly.
Wearing a pink sari, Finance Minister Diya Kumar not only presented the budget in an experienced manner but also did not miss the opportunity to taunt the opposition. Expressing disagreement with the opposition, she stated that she would not appear weak.
Although the BJP team is definitely new in terms of experience, in the matter of taking on the experienced members of Congress, Chief Minister Bhajan Lal Sharma and Finance Minister Diya Kumari expressed that they are not going to be weak.
While the budget was interim, not full-term, the way Diya Kumar delivered the budget speech was an attempt to show that she should not be underestimated.
Finance ministers usually focus on their speeches, but Diya Kumar did not miss the chance to taunt Congress. On the issue of law and order, without mentioning the statement of former minister Shanti Dhariwal about men from the state, Diya referred to it indirectly. Dhariwal’s statement on increasing rape incidents had weighed heavily on Congress.
As Speaker for the first time, Vasudev Devnani played the role of a tough leader as much as he got the opportunity. In the first half hour, Congress attempted to dominate the Opposition. Then, Devnani, while cautioning opposition members, asked them to remain calm.
When the matter did not work out, Chief Minister Bhajan Lal Sharma intervened as the Leader of the House and told the opposition that for the first time as the Finance Minister, the woman member was presenting the budget, she should be supported.
However, opposition leader Tika Ram Jully did not lag behind in speaking as the leader of the opposition. He said, “We have no objection to the woman finance minister reading the speech, but focus on the written speech sent from Delhi.” After that, Diya, while maintaining peace in the house, read the budget speech, but also made jokes about the previous government.
In today’s budget, the BJP did not bring up anything new. They focused on raising issues like paper leaks and women’s safety only during the elections. There was no announcement regarding the Old-age Pension Scheme, Chiranjeevi Health Scheme, or reduction in prices of petrol and diesel. The government is avoiding directly ending schemes like OPS and Chiranjeevi Health Scheme. After almost two decades, the state budget was presented by a full-time woman Finance Minister. Earlier the Chief Minister used to present the budget. Diya Kumari also left no stone unturned in fulfilling this responsibility of the Finance Minister.
She also tried to convey messages through poems in her speech. She made sure not to be underestimated, maintaining the demeanour of an experienced finance minister, with clapping and taunts at the opposition during the speech.