PROTESTERS tried to break garda lines and get into Leinster House. Hundreds of demonstrators marched on the Dail in the wake of the toughest-ever Budget. Gardai had closed off Kildare Street but some angry protesters tried to barge their way past.
As many as 1,500 showed up to voice their opposition to the austerity measures.
But only a small number clashed with gardai outside Leinster House after Finance Minister Michael Noonan had delivered the bad news.
A few people, mainly young men, were involved in the scuffles but it did not escalate beyond pushing and shoving.
It broke out at around 6pm on Kildare Street but was quickly dealt with by gardai, some on horseback.
Many protesters carried placards decrying the measures announced by the Government shortly beforehand. One hoarding was designed to look like a road sign and stated: 'Warning -- Permanent Austerity Ahead."
Elsewhere, a demonstrator wearing a mask of German chancellor Angela Merkel was being handed a bag of money by a subservient looking 'Enda Kenny'.
Gardai maintained a presence at the scene for a time after the protest came to an end, at about 8pm.
A Garda spokeswoman told the Herald there were no reports of any arrests outside the Dail yesterday.
"I think it was just a bit of hustle and bustle," she said.