The second half of the Budget session of Parliament beginning on April 25 is set to be a stormy affair with opposition parties closing ranks over the imposition of Presidents’ rule in Uttarakhand.
The government has listed 13 bills in Lok Sabha and 11 bills in Rajya Sabha for passage is sceptical about the pushing the contentious measures like GST in first few days.
Congress backed by the Left, JD (U) and other opposition parties, is determined to corner the Centre over the imposition of President’s rule in Uttarakhand and Arunachal Pradesh, calling it an “assault” on the federal structure.
NDA government is likely to counter the attack citing instances of imposition of President’s rule when Congress governments or governments backed by it or other opposition parties were in power at the Centre.
Government sources claimed President’s rule was imposed 111 times in the country since 1951, out of which it happened 91 times when BJP or NDA was not in power.
Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan called for an all party meeting on Sunday to ensure smooth functioning of Parliament.
The present session begins in the middle of the raging controversy over the Uttarakhand political crisis in which the Centre’s role has come in for scathing criticism, besides drought-like conditions in 10 states.
Opposition parties have given notices for suspension of Question Hour on the first day of the session over the Uttarakhand issue and sought a discussion on the drought in the first week.
Congress’s Deputy Leader in Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma has sought a resolution by the Upper House that seeks to “deplore” the “destabilisation” of the democratically elected government in Uttarakhand and “disapprove the unjustified” imposition of President’s rule in the state.
Congress President Sonia Gandhi, who had held discussions with select party leaders during a strategy meeting on the Uttarakhand crisis, had suggested that the party should take an aggressive stand on this issue.
Apart from the Uttarakhand issue, Congress will also target the government over imposition of President’s rule in Arunachal Pradesh, the Pathankot terror attack, the Ishrat Jahan case, drought management and alleged communalisation of educational institutes.
After the near wash-out of the two sessions last year, the government is looking ahead to the second half of the Budget session to push bills, including the key Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill, touted as the biggest tax reform in India.
During the 15 sittings of the session, besides ratification of Presidential Proclamation in Uttarakhand, two Ordinances-the Uttarakhand Appropriation and The Enemy Property Second Ordinance, 2016 are also on the agenda. The session will also see an elaborate discussion on the demands for grants of various ministries.