External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Thursday said he had enjoyed his first Lok Sabha term which was coming to an end and fondly reminisced the first opportunity of “pressing the button on the finance bill”.
“I enjoyed to the fullest extent. This was the first time I was elected to the Lok Sabha,” Mukherjee told reporters in the Parliament premises.
He said this term had given him the opportunity to introduce the Finance Bill for the fourth time.
“For the first time, I had the privilege of pressing the button on the Finance Bill (as a member of the Lok Sabha),” Mukherjee said, adding this was also the first time he presented the Finance Bill as a member of the Lower House.
He recalled an instance in 1982 when as Finance Minister and member of the Rajya Sabha, he had introduced the Finance Bill. Mukherjee said a constitutional objection had been raised then that a minister who was not a member of the Lok Sabha could not vote on the budget.
Mukherjee said he was hopeful of winning another term as MP. “I expect to come back in the next Lok Sabha.”
Mukherjee stepped in as Finance Minister in an interim arrangement due to the absence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who has kept the ministry with himself since P Chidambaram was moved to the Home Ministry.