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Union Budget may be presented in mid-March, says Pranab Mukherjee

PTI     January 25, 2012
The Union Budget may be presented around the middle of March in view of the ongoing Assembly elections, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee indicated on Wednesday.

In an informal chat with journalists, he said a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs will be convened in the first week of February to decide on the date of the Budget Session of Parliament.

He said the customary President's address to the Budget Session of Parliament can take place after March 9 because of the model code of conduct being in force till that day when the election process would be completed.

Asked if the Union Budget will be presented around the middle of March, he said, "Yes".

He said there is a Constitutional sanctity to two dates - one is March 31 before which a vote on account should be taken so that there is no problem of withdrawal of money in the new financial year and the 75 days deadline after presentation of taxation proposals to pass the Finance Bill.

Asked about prosecution of people whose names have figured as holding black money in banks abroad, he said that is an ongoing legal process.

To a question about the Supreme Court judgement on Vodafone tax, he declined any comment, saying the government will study it.

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