19 January, New Delhi
The Election Commission has sought fresh details from the Central government about the procedure adopted to delay the presentation of the Union Budget in 2012.
Sources said in a letter to the Cabinet Secretary, the Commission has sought reply in this regard by tomorrow morning. It has also sought details on the process involved in preparing and presenting the Union Budget.
When the opposition objected in 2012 during the Assembly polls, the then UPA government had postponed presentation of the Union Budget.
On 10th of this month, the government had replied to the Commission defending its decision to advance the budget session. The poll panel had asked the Cabinet Secretariat to respond to a representation by opposition parties urging it to make the government postpone the budget till assembly polls are over.
Earlier, opposition parties, including Congress, TMC, BSP and SP demanded that the presentation of the budget should be delayed till at least 8th of March, when the last of the votes will be cast for the polls to UP, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Manipur and Goa. They feel that the Budget on 1st of February will tilt the balance in favour of ruling BJP as it would use the exercise to influence voters by doling out sops.