During the last week of February, people flock to Twitter to get a firsthand account of the fiscal health of our country. The Rail Budget, Economic Survey, and the presentation of the Union Budget catalyse intense conversation amongst policy makers, influencers, journalists, and opinion-makers. This year, The Railway Ministry (@RailMinIndia), Finance Ministry (@FinMinIndia), Press Information Bureau (@PIB_India), and the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (@MIB_India) came together to make these policy documents more accessible to folks throughout the country.
As the Union minister for railways Suresh Prabhu (@sureshpprabhu) presented his second Railways Budget 2016 (#RailBudget2016), the Railway Ministry (@RailMinIndia) used Twitter to reach out to users with live, real-time updates about one of the largest government budgets that can help millions of Indian citizens travelling every day.
The Railway Ministry made the budget conversation accessible to passengers by deploying over 100 screens at the New Delhi Railway Station that broadcasted the speech, streamed Tweets live, and presented the Rail Budget in real time.
Prior to presenting the Union Railway budget at the parliament, Suresh Prabhu engaged in a breakfast chat on Periscope to set the expectations from this year’s budget.
The Railway Ministry also responded with real-time infographics highlighting the key features of the budget via Tweets with #RailBudget2016.
Twitter equipped users with a live and public platform to engage in conversations around the Rail Budget.
Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian (@arvindsubraman), aided by @FinMinIndia @NitiAyog, @MakeInIndia and @PIB_India, took to Twitter to present the Economic Survey 2016. He answered questions post the presentation of the survey.
Be it a series of Twitter Polls to solicit and incorporate people’s opinion into this year’s budget by the Finance Ministry (@FinMinIndia) or exclusive behind the scenes peek into the highly secretive process of the making of the #UnionBudget2016, Finance Minister @ArunJaitley, Minister of State Finance @JayantSinha opened up the Budget to the masses like never before.
@FinMinIndia posted an autographed picture of the Finance Minister @ArunJaitley via Twitter’s Challenger app.
Our media partners innovated on Twitter by employing an array of Twitter tools and products, opening up the conversation around the events to a diverse set of audiences.
In a Twitter first, @manoramanews empowered users with a Malayalam “@ reply” integration, enabling their followers to receive customised #Budget2016 infographics in Malayalam.
#UnionBudget2016 marked an implosion of video on the platform, with the usage of video publishing tool SnappyTV, Vine, Periscope, and native Twitter video.
Partners — including @EconomicTimes, @TimesNow, @IndiaToday, @NDTV, @HtTweets, @IndianExpress, @The_Hindu, @AmarUjalaNews, and @JagranNews — used tools like Twitter Polls, GIFs, Twitter Reverb (@TwitterReverb), and Curator to build on established best practices like rich media live-Tweeting.
All this innovation led by gov and news partners led to 600K Total Tweets around the Budget on the Twitter platform. Here’s a snapshot into what users were saying on the day, courtesy @TwitterReverb: http://reverb.guru/view/966908146178753129
This week more than anything else proved that when it comes to the intersection of news and government, Twitter continues to be India’s live connection to culture.