The countdown for the final Budget of the Modi Government 2.0 began on Wednesday with completion of the halwa ceremony. The ceremony marks the final stage of the Budget preparation process for Interim Union Budget 2024, which will be presented on February 1 by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

Although this will be fourth occasion when Budget will be delivered in paperless form, still the decades-old tradition of printing Budget documents continues. From Wednesday, over 100 employees of the Finance Ministry will reside inside the Budget press located inside the North Block and give final shape to the digital form of the Budget. They will come out only after the presentation of the Budget.

The Budget documents will be available on the mobile app after the completion of the Budget Speech by the Union Finance Minister in Parliament.

The ceremony was presided over by the Finance Minister and attended by Union Minister of State for Finance Dr Bhagwat Kisanrao Karad, along with Finance Secretary TV Somanathan; Economic Affairs Secretary Ajay Seth; DIPAM Secretary Tuhin Kanta Pandey; Revenue Secretary Sanjay Malhotra; CBDT Chairman Nitin Gupta; CBIC Chairman Sanjay Kumar Agarwal; and Additional Secretary Ashish Vachhani.

As part of the ceremony, the Union Finance Minister also took a round of the Budget Press and reviewed the preparations besides extending her best wishes to the officials.