New Delhi: Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi's maiden budget presentation in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday was comparatively low-key to those by his predecessors Mamata Banerjee and Lalu Prasad with fewer quips, jibes, jeers and interventions during his speech.

A large part of Trivedi's 90-minute speech, interspersed with rhyming poetry that drew some laughter, was heard in silence.

Most members were eager that the minister announce details of the new trains and projects, which would have helped them reach out to their respective constituencies, but were disappointed when Trivedi kept asking them to look at the annexure.

Many senior leaders were not present in the House during the presentation. These include UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar- who had fainted on Tuesday in the lobby in Parliament- and sulking Union Minister Harish Rawat.

From the Opposition benches, NDA Working Chairperson L K Advani and JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav, along with SAD members were away in Chandigarh to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Parkash Singh Badal as Punjab Chief Minister. Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh and his son and UP Chief Minister- designate Akhilesh Yadav were also not present.

Notable among those present were Rahul Gandhi, who had kept away from the President's Address, and Suresh Kalmadi, who was released from Tihar jail recently in CWG case.

RJD chief Lalu Prasad, however, was irrepressible. Right in the beginning he asked Trivedi twice to speak in Hindi. At one point, he took a jibe at the minister, saying, "tell us which annexure to go to".

A conspicuous change this time was absence of repeated references to schemes and trains for West Bengal, which had become a prominent feature of Banerjee's last two budgets.