New Delhi, January 30: Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking the cooperation of all parties in running Parliament during Budget session said it is a ‘mahapanchayat’ which should function despite all the differences which may arise during the poll season. At an all-party meet called by the government, PM Modi also requested all the political parties to provide full support to the budget as it is mandatory for the country’s growth.
But still, opposition parties stood together in questioning about the timing of the union budget. During the all-party meet, the opposition also demanded the discussions on other important issues such as demonetisation and internal security and criticised the abbreviated nature of the session. Opposition leaders also said that the government was non-committal on the issue of the presentation of the Budget.
“The presentation of the Budget on February 1 is not just unseemly with regard to polls in five states but also that the economic data from the third quarter will not be factored in," said CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury. "Demonetisation has had a devastating impact on the economy and the figures from the third quarter will not be available, so the Budget exercise won't reflect this disruption at all," he said.
Meanwhile, Congress' chief whip Jyotiraditya Scindia said that the session was for 9 days, with only five proper working days which will be spent on clearing the motion of thanks to the President for his address to the joint Houses of Parliament, and Union Budget. “We have also asked for a discussion on demonetisation, frequent violations of a ceasefire between India and Pakistan and the undermining of institutions like the Reserve Bank of India,” he said.
Interestingly, Trinamool Congress which has been unhappy over the note ban and arrest of its MPs in chit fund cases and NDA ally Shiv Sena kept itself away from the meet.
Talking to the Press reporters, union minister Ananth Kumar said that all parties mainly opposition were of the view that the budget session should function and discussion should take place. He further said that all party meeting ended on a positive side.
The budget session to begin from Tuesday and will start with President Pranab Mukherjee's address to a joint sitting of the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Ministers including Rajnath Singh, Arun Jaitley and Ananth Kumar were present at the meeting. Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Sharad Yadav of JD(U), AIADMK leader Dr. Venugopal, Sitaram Yechury of CPI(M) were among those attended the meet.
Apart from the presentation of the general budget, 34 bills will be taken up for passing and consideration during the session. These include three ordinances which will be replaced through bills. The ordinances relate to Enemy Property, Payment of Wages and Specified Bank Notes. The other important legislations to be taken up include Goods and Services Tax, Central Goods and Services Tax (Compensation for loss of revenue) and Integrated GST.