On Saturday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman recited a verse in Kashmiri while presenting the Union Budget to a packed Parliament.
The Narendra Modi government has come up with a 16-point plan to ease the farm crisis, including liberalising the agriculture sector, Sitharaman said in her budget speech.
The FM also added that the budget was broadly divided into three major themes — aspirational India, economic development and building a caring society that is humane.
However, before announcing the government’s commitments, Sitharaman broke into a Kashmiri verse.
"हमारा वतन फिर से हुआ शालीमार बाग जैसा
हमारा वतन डल झील में खिलते कमल जैसा
नौजवानों के गर्म खून जैसा
मेरा वतन तेरा वतन हमारा वतन
दुनिया का सबसे प्यारा वतन"
"Humara watan khilta hua shalimaar bagh jaisa
Humara watan Dal lake mein khilta hua kamal jaisa
Navjawanon ke garam khoon jaisa
Mera watan tera watan humara watan duniya ka sabse pyara watan"
"Our country like a Shalimar garden, like a lotus in Dal Lake, the best country in the world," she read out the translation of the verse.
With the recitation of the verse, penned by Kashmiri poet Dinanath Kaul as part of his famous work "Myon Vatan" (My Motherland), Sitharaman indicated that every action taken in the budget was dedicated to "pyara vatan" or the beloved country.
This, however, did not sit down too well with Twitterati.
The Narendra Modi government on August 5 had imposed a communications lockdown in August after it abrogated provisions of Article 370 of the Constitution, stripping the Muslim-majority region of its autonomy.
The bill sparked debates and protests from Indian nationals as well as from foreign counterparts, the Valley remained in a blackout situation until the Supreme Court stepped in and said that the indefinite shutting down of internet in Jammu and Kashmir was impermissible and repeated prohibitory orders banning large assemblies was an abuse of power as it asked the J&K administration to review the restrictions that have been imposed in the region for the last five months.
On January 25, low-speed mobile internet was restored in Kashmir but the service can only be used to access 301 websites approved by the administration.
"I wish to recite a small verse in Kashmiri" says the FM. Nice thought, although most of the language's speakers won't be able to respond thanks to the internet blackout. #Budget2020— Mihir Sharma (@mihirssharma) February 1, 2020
However, many others pointed out at the work of famous Kashmiri poet, who found a mention on the B-Day.
For those who asked about the great Kashmiri poet Pt. Dina Nath Kaul 'Nadim' who was born in 1916 and remains one of the greatest poets from the land of the Vitasta, the vale of Kashmir. https://t.co/vuAYytak0j https://t.co/B2iDpynPZw— Siddharth Zarabi (@szarabi) February 1, 2020
And hailed the Finance Minister for opting to recite the famous words in an unprecedented move.
That was quite awesome @nsitharaman! Beautiful delivery of those powerful lines from Pandit Dina Nath Kaul’s poem in Kashmiri, a first in the history of Indian budget in Parliament. Superb. ❤️😍— Aarti Tikoo Singh (@AartiTikoo) February 1, 2020
This is the Kashmiri poem recited by Finance Minister @nsitharaman #BudgetSession2020— Pooja Shali (@PoojaShali) February 1, 2020
"Myon Vatan" (My Motherland) - by Dinanath Kaul 'Nadim'.
(Literal and metaphorical reference attempt about lotus in Kashmir). https://t.co/79Hz82ErqI
Nirmala Sitharaman cited a Kashmiri poem during her budget speech :)— Isheeta Bali (@isheetab) February 1, 2020