Budget presentation uncertain today after sitting MP E Ahamed’s death and Lok Sabha may be adjourned today.
Traditionally, the House adjourns for a day to mourn a departed sitting member who dies either during the inter-session period or during the session itself.
Sitting Lok Sabha MP from Malappuram in Kerala, E Ahamed, died early on Wednesday. He had suffered a heart attack during President Pranab Mukherjee’s address to the joint session of Parliament, a day before presentation of Budget.
The Narendra Modi government wants February 1 this year to be a historic day. In a departure from tradition and for the first time in the history of independent India, Budget will be presented on this day. Earlier, it would be tabled on February 28. Moreover, also for the first time, there will be no separate Railway Budget from this year. It used to be presented on February 26 earlier. From this year, it has been merged with the General Budget.
However, the death of Ahamed, the chief of Indian Union Muslim League, has raised doubts about presentation of the Budget today. As per tradition and established norms, the House adjourns for a day, after mourning the departed sitting member, who has died either during the inter-session period or during the session itself.
On July 18 last year, the first day of the Monsoon Session if Parliament, the Lok Sabha was adjourned to mourn the death of sitting BJP member Dalpat Singh Paraste from Shahdol in Madhya Pradesh. Paraste had died on June 1.
Hence, the Lok Sabha adjourned after making obituary references. By that example, the Lok Sabha may be adjourned today to mourn the death of Ahamed, who had served as minister of state for external affairs during the UPA regime.
But there is a possibility of the Narendra Modi government presenting the Budget before adjourning the House. The Rajya Sabha can function normally and the Budget may be presented there subsequently because Ahamed was not a member of the Upper House.
The Lok Sabha was adjourned on the first day of the Monsoon Session last year only after carrying out some business. Prime Minister Narendra Modi introduced the newly inducted Cabinet Ministers before adjournment was announced to mourn the passing away of Paraste.
In the same manner, the Budget may be presented before adjourning the Lok Sabha on account of Ahamed’s death. However, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan will take a final call after meeting Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar, opposition leader Mallikarjun Kharge and others.