Longest speech to fine print: Here're India-specific snippets on Budget

FOR THE RECORD: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presenting the Budget in 2020
Words worth

Pranab Mukherjee, as finance minister, delivered a 95-minute-long speech while presenting Budget 1982, prompting Indira Gandhi, then prime minister, to say: “The shortest finance minister has delivered the longest Budget speech.” Today, the record for the longest Budget speech — 160 minutes —is held by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. The speech, which she delivered in 2020, was, however, cut short towards the end as she felt unwell. Her first Budget speech, in July 2019, had gone on for 137 minutes, breaking the record of Jaswant Singh (133 minutes, in 2003).

Fine print

Until 1950, the Union Budget was printed at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. But after it got leaked, the printing was shifted to a press at Minto Road, New Delhi. Later, in 1980, a permanent government press was set up in the North Block basement. 

It is here that the Budget it printed every year.

This year, however, the printing press will remain silent. For the first time in the history of independent India, the Budget documents will not be printed due to safety concerns because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

 



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