NEW DELHI: The Union Budget will be presented after the completion of elections in five states, but the government has not yet decided the final date of presentation, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said today.
"We have not yet decided the time (for the Budget), but naturally it will be after the elections," Mukherjee told reporters here.
He was replying to a query on the likely date for presentation of the Budget.
The announcement of the Assembly election schedule in five states between January 30 and March 3 has raised the possibility of rescheduling of the Budget for 2012-13 this year.
As per the schedule worked out by the Election Commission, last polling will take place on March 3 in Goa and counting of votes will begin on March 4.
The general budget is usually presented on the last day of February every year.
Mukherjee will hold brainstorming sessions with various stakeholders during his annual pre-budget meetings beginning January 11.
The first meeting would be held with agriculturalists, followed by a series of interactions with sectoral experts, representatives, industry captains and economists over the next ten days to get their feedback and inputs for incorporating them in Budget 2012-13.
Mukherjee is slated to meet captains of industry on January 13, followed by trade union leaders on January 16.
Five states -- Punjab, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Goa and Manipur -- are going to polls between January 30 and March 3.
Punjab and Uttarakhand, whose assemblies will be completing terms on March 14 and 12 respectively, go to polls on January 30 while Manipur polls are slated on January 28.
Goa, where the Assembly's term is up to June 14, goes to polls last on March 3.
The crucial Uttar Pradesh polls have been staggered in seven phases between February 4 and 28.