SCOTTISH Conservative leader Douglas Ross was caught on camera appearing to laugh and heckle as First Minister Nicola Sturgeon reeled off a list of the economic damage caused by last week’s mini budget.

After the pound fell to record levels against the dollar, the IMF gave an extraordinary statement and the Bank of England was forced to intervene, the First Minister challenged Ross on his demands for Holyrood to replicate the tax-cutting policies announced by the Chancellor.

Sturgeon told the Moray MP that people are “terrified” about the state of their finances, after reports that pension funds would have collapsed without Bank of England action.

She contrasted that serious moment with Ross “demanding that I match Tory tax cuts for the richest people in our society”.

She went on: “Tax cuts that have already sunk the pound, crashed the mortgage market, brought people’s pensions to the brink of collapse, forced the Bank of England into an emergency bailout, tax cuts that will force deep reductions in public spending.

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“I think people might have wanted to hear Douglas Ross today explain why he thinks the Scottish Government should emulate these policies.”

At this point, cameras showed Ross leaning back in his chair and appearing to heckle the First Minister while he smirked.

Sturgeon went on: “Douglas Ross’s silence on his demand that we do so says everything about his poor, appalling judgement.”

An SNP source later told The National: “We can only assume Douglas Ross was not smiling but was gurning because of uncomfortable trapped wind. There is absolutely nothing for him to smile about at the moment.

“He is a prominent member of the party which has plunged Britain into a full-scale economic crisis, leaving households the length and breadth of Scotland fearing how they keep a roof over their heads and food on the table. Yet here he is in Parliament apparently smiling like the Cheshire prat.

“People across Scotland will rightly be appalled if the Scots Tory leader is treating a gravely serious situation with such apparent frivolity."