Hardening its stance, the Centre on Sunday indicated that it would not allow further amendments to the controversial Land Bill and asserted that it is ready to face the “consequences” even as it acknowledged that Rajya Sabha is a “stumbling block in our way.”
“Government has made the needed amendments. If there are well-meaning suggestions, let it come. Then we will consider it,” Parliamentary Affairs and Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu told, when asked if the government is ready for more amendments.
Earlier, speaking to reporters, Naidu did not buy the argument that there is a deadlock on the Bill as the Opposition is firm on opposing it.
“There is no deadlock. Lock has been opened. We did not have numbers (in Rajya Sabha), but the Coal Bill has been passed, Mines and Minerals Bill (MMDR) has been passed in the same Rajya Sabha, let’s see.
“After the nine amendments moved by the government in the Lok Sabha (on the Land Bill), there is nothing, nothing objectionable. We did not do anything unilaterally. We have done extensive consultations,” the minister said.
“They (the Congress and Opposition parties which are against the Land Bill) don’t want growth. They don’t want good name to the government. They want development holiday to be extended. We are not ready. We want to do something. We are ready to face the consequences (on the Land Bill)”, he said.
Expressing confidence that the people “will be with us,” Naidu said the government would again bring the Bill to Lok Sabha.
“I am confident, with the mood of the people, the members of Parliament will support the Bill in both Houses and it will be passed. That’s my confidence,” he said.
“Let there be a constructive debate when Parliament meets. When we discuss, if there are meaningful suggestions, government has declared that we are open for discussion,” he said.
Naidu said the NDA government is eager to deliver on the promises made to people, “but the fact is we do not have majority in Rajya Sabha. It’s a stumbling block in our way. Sometimes, legislative measures and nation’s development have been blocked in Parliament.”
But the Minister asserted that the government is determined to go ahead with its agenda of development and good governance.
He said under the NDA government led by Narendra Modi, the days of scams and scandals are over. “In the last ten months, we could not hear a single scam or scandal,” he said.
Naidu said “leadership is back, investors are looking at India. Ease of doing business is back.”
The party has decided to counter on a massive scale across the country from May the “disinformation campaign” unleashed against the Modi government by the Opposition, he said.
“We will lay bare before the nation the falsehood that is sought to be spread by our opponents,” he said.