First budget session under AAP-led Punjab Govt begins on Friday; Moose Wala's murder may dominate di

Updated: Jul 19

The first budget session of the Bhagwant Mann-led Punjab government will begin on Friday in Chandigarh, and opposition parties are preparing to launch an onslaught against the ruling AAP over law and order and other concerns.

On Friday, the House will convene for a discussion on the Governor's address, obituary references, and a motion of thanks. The general discussion of the budget will take place after Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema presents the budget for 2022–2023 on June 27. The budget session will last until June 30 according to the projected schedule.

The Mann administration has come under fire from the opposition Congress, BJP, and SAD for an alleged deterioration in law and order, particularly in the wake of the horrific murder of well-known Punjabi artist Sidhu Moose Wala last month. In addition, they criticized the state government for "unfulfilled promises". The chief minister had previously stated that his administration will offer a paperless budget.

Notably, a vote-on-account for the first quarter (April–June) of the fiscal year 2022–23 was approved by the Punjab parliament in March. After capturing 92 of the 117 Punjab assembly seats in the state, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) assumed control in March. The general public was asked for proposals for the state budget by the AAP administration, which minister Cheema had previously stated would be a "Janta" budget (people's budget).

Notably, the ruling administration had proposals from the public to increase funding for the sectors of agriculture, health, and education, which sources claimed are among the state government's primary emphasis areas and will be reflected in the budget that will be released the following week.

Getting the state economy back on track will be a struggle for AAP, which in the run-up to the assembly elections lambasted past governments for dragging the state into a fiscal disaster. Mann recently stated that the AAP government's priorities were to create jobs for youth, build hospitals and schools, get rid of corruption, and make Punjab once more "range" (vibrant).

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