Fille photo: Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
Fille photo: Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

Finance minister launches mobile app for Budget 2021 on Halwa ceremony day

  • In an unprecedented initiative, the Budget 2021-22 will be delivered in paperless form for the first time on February 1, 2021.
By HT Correspondent, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 23, 2021 07:25 PM IST

The Union finance ministry on Saturday celebrated the customary ‘halwa’ ceremony, which is performed every year before the ‘lock-in’ process of Budget preparation at North Block.

The ceremony, marking the final stage of the Budget-making process for 2021-22, was held on Saturday afternoon in the presence of Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, an official statement said.

Every year, after the halwa ceremony, officials involved in the budget-making process are moved to the basement of the North Block and get locked-in for about 10 days till the time the budget is presented in the parliament to ensure absolute confidentiality.

In an unprecedented initiative, the Budget 2021-22 will be delivered in paperless form for the first time on February 1, 2021, it added.

Sitharaman on Saturday also launched the ‘Union Budget Mobile App’ for hassle-free access of Budget documents by Members of Parliament (MPs) and the general public using the simplest form of digital convenience, the statement said.

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“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,” it said.

The app has a user-friendly interface with embedded features of downloading, printing, search, zoom in and out, bidirectional scrolling, table of contents and external links. The bilingual (English and Hindi) app can also be downloaded from the Union Budget web portal (www.indiabudget.gov.in), it said. The app has been developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC) under the guidance of the department of economic affairs (DEA).

The Budget documents will be available on the mobile app after the completion of the Budget speech by the finance minister in the Parliament on February 1.

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