Budget session of Haryana Assembly to begin on Feb 20

2-week budget session of Haryana Assembly to begin on February 20, likely to be stormy

Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who also holds the finance portfolio, will be presenting his maiden budget on February 28. Credit: Twitter (@mlkhattar)

The two-week budget session of Haryana Assembly which begins here on Thursday is likely to be a stormy affair, with the opposition set to corner the BJP-JJP government on several issues including "paddy and mining scam", law and order, farmers' plight and the Sutlej-Yamuna Link Canal.

Congress, the main opposition party, said it will raise burning issues facing the state.

Former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly, said that in its first 100 days in office, the Bharatiya Janata Party-Jannayak Janata Party government has just made speeches without delivering on the governance front.

He said his party had demanded a probe into the "multi-crore paddy scam", but the government remained silent on this. The Congress will also corner the ruling dispensation on alleged mining scam, he said.

There are other important issues such as farmers' plight, unemployment , alleged deterioration in law and order and the SYL canal issue.

The Congress leader claimed that the state's debt which was earlier Rs 61,000 crore has become Rs 1.81 lakh crore under the BJP regime.

On the Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue, Hooda said the Punjab government recently convened an all-party meeting and asserted it does not have a drop of water to spare, but the Haryana dispensation is "doing nothing" to counter them.

Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who also holds the finance portfolio, will be presenting his maiden budget on February 28.

With the House not meeting on Saturday and Sunday (February 29 and March 1), the discussion on the Budget is likely to take place on March 2, as per a tentative schedule.

However, the Business Advisory Committee of the Assembly, which will meet here shortly before the session, will decide the final programme of the session, officials said.

Ahead of the assembly session, Khattar undertook an extensive month-long pre-budget consultation exercise with various stakeholders including MPs, MLAs, industry and agriculture experts, women and people representing other sections.

"This will be a people's budget," Khattar had said earlier, adding all valuable suggestions he received during the consultation process will be incorporated in the budget.

However, Hooda has questioned the logic behind the state government's pre-budget consultation exercise with MLAs in the absence of the economic survey report.

Lone INLD MLA Abhay Singh Chautala had termed the entire exercise a "mere formality" only meant to make "newspaper headlines".

He also rued the "very little time" allocated, as per the tentative schedule, for discussion on the budget estimates. The government wants to avoid an in-depth discussion on the budget, he alleged.

The session will begin with the Governor's Address on Thursday.