Home / Budget / Budget 2023: Nirmala Sitharaman to lead halwa ceremony tomorrow - All you need to know about the tradition
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A halwa ceremony will be held on Thursday ahead of the 'lock-in' process for those involved in the 2023 Budget preparation. The event will be led by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, and marks the final stage of preparation for the Union Budget.

What is a halwa ceremony?

In order to maintain secrecy, officials involved in making the Budget undergo a 'lock-in' process, only to emerge from the North Block after the presentation on February 1. The halwa ceremony is a send-off of sorts and is attended by all top officials. It also recognises and appreciates the many staffers who are part of the Budget-making process.

The finance minister begins the ceremony by stirring the halwa in the kadhai and then serves it to colleagues at the ministry's headquarters in the national capital.

The ceremony had been curtailed last year in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, sweets were provided to the core staff due to undergoing 'lock-in' at their workplaces.

What comes after the halwa ceremony?

The annual tradition marks the starting point for all Budget-related events. Following the ceremony the employees who are part of the Budget-making process move to the basement of the north block for approximately 10 days.

They will remain there until Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presents the annual Budget on February 1. This is done to ensure that there are no leaks. 

The Union Finance Ministry prepares the budget in consultation with the Niti Aayog and concerned ministries.

 

(With inputs from agencies)

 

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