JAIPUR: Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Friday read excerpts of the previous budget instead of Budget 2023-24, the major goof-up leading to an uproar in the house and an apology from the chief minister who said it was human error.
There were two adjournments with the Opposition BJP alleging that the budget had been leaked and the presentation be postponed to another date.
The House was first adjourned for half-an-hour within a few minutes of the budget presentation beginning and then again for 15 minutes. When the House reassembled after the first adjournment, Speaker CP Joshi expunged the proceedings from 11 am to 11.42 am.
He said whatever happened was unfortunate. Human errors, he said, happen and are rectified.
When the house reassembled after the second adjournment, the chief minister said, “I am feeling sorry. An extra page was added by mistake. It was human error.”
Incorrect figures were presented when Vasundhara Raje was chief minister and that were also rectified, he said.
Raje, who was present in the House, hit back, saying what Gehlot had done was sheer carelessness. “Koi bhi CM is tarah se kaagaz nahin laate. Aisa hoga toh Rajasthan kya hoga (No chief minister comes with papers like this. What will happen to the state if the chief minister does something like this),” she said.
The uproar ended after the chief minister’s apologies and the budget speech began after that.
The speaker directed Opposition members to maintain the dignity of the house and the sanctity of the budget but the Opposition members continued their protest.
Leader of Opposition Gulab Chand Kataria said the copy of the budget remains locked and it remains with the finance minister.
For the dignity of the house, the budget should be postponed and a new date fixed, he said.
The chief minister requested Opposition members to return to their benches but the uproar continued.
When the protest continued, the speaker adjourned the house for the second time for 15 minutes at 12.13 pm.
This is the last budget for the Congress-led Gehlot government before assembly polls in the state.