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Pant falls ill while presenting budget

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By Arun Pratap Singh

DEHRADUN, 18 Feb: Finance Minister Prakash Pant was halfway through his budget speech in the House, today, when he suddenly fell almost unconscious and was about to fall over the microphones but was helped by fellow ministers and MLAs who seated him on his chair. He gained consciousness after some moments after which he again got up and attempted to read the speech. However, he could barely utter a few words before he became uncomfortable again and was unable to continue reading. Soon, a physician arrived and checked him. His blood pressure was reportedly low and this was the reason stated for the incident.
He was taken outside the House into the gallery, where the physician and some of the MLAs including Munna Singh Chauhan and Minister SubodhUniyal remained by his side. After sometime, he felt better. In the meantime, however, Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat had started reading the remaining budget speech.
Pant, however, felt better enough to address a post budget press conference. He kept it short, highlighting the thrust of the budget and sharing some figures. No questions were taken.