RS obstructionist, a test for democracy: Jaitley

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said here on Thursday that with the indirectly elected Upper House obstructing passage of laws passed by the directly elected Lower House, Bill after Bill, session after session, India’s parliamentary democracy was facing a serious challenge. Article 110, dealing with money Bills, is the constitutional remedy for such a situation, he said.

To a question from The Hindu about the Opposition’s charge that the government is increasingly resorting to money Bills for legislation to bypass Rajya Sabha scrutiny, Mr. Jaitley said: “They [Rajya Sabha members] raise these questions, but when I read to them Article 110 of Constitution, they have no reply… Taxation being levied, appropriations, expenditure, cuts in expenditure are all money Bills… this is my legal and constitutional response.”

He said though he could not blame the entire Opposition for delaying the Constitutional Amendment Bill for the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST), “there are certainly some elements in the Opposition which feel it will be a positive for them if through obstructionism they could slow down India … Regrettably they can’t.”

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Printable version | Sep 30, 2020 10:56:51 AM |

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