Govt blames Sonia, Rahul for stalling of Parliament

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New Delhi | Published: August 11, 2015 12:15:00 AM

Unable to move constitution amendment proposals in the Rajya Sabha for the Goods and Services Tax (GST) due to disruptions in the House...

Unable to move constitution amendment proposals in the Rajya Sabha for the Goods and Services Tax (GST) due to disruptions in the House, finance minister Arun Jaitley on Monday attacked Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi for stalling the House, saying they were using the row over Sushma Swaraj as a “pretext” to stop passage of the Bill.

In light of Congress resistance to the Constitution (122 nd Amendment) Bill, the Modi government may have to convene a special session of Parliament to get it cleared by the Upper House to implement the GST from April 1, 2016, as desired.

Rahul Gandhi maintained on Monday that Congress will allow Parliament to function only after external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj discloses her family’s financial transactions with controversial Lalit Modi.

“We are constrained to observe that the issue of Sushmaji is merely a pretext. The real motive of Congress leadership is that they do not want GST Bill to be passed. To stop it is their clear motive. They want India’s growth story to suffer and are making a full endeavour in that direction through their distruptionst policy,” said Jaitley.

Jaitley alleged that Congress does not want the economy to benefit from the boost the bill’s passage will bring. “Congress is in a disruptionist mood. Even when the UPA was in power, economic growth had ceased to be a priority for it. Some policies which were inflicted on the government by the Congress president caused the slowdown,” he said. Jaitley also said Congress was “completely isolated” on the GST Bill and numbers were in the favour of its passage. He also said that most other opposition parties were for the Parliament to function. “The assessment in the government is that there are not many in even Congress pushing this logic that House should not run. Only their top two leaders… have been stubborn on it,” he said.

Congress maintains it is in favour of the GST Bill, but only with the modifications it had suggested. The government is of the view that amending the Bill based on dissent notes given to the House committee by political parties was a difficult proposition.

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