Bill to Extinguish Notes Introduced in Lok Sabha
Bill may be brought to RS as a Money Bill to ensure its smooth passage in Parliament
Our Political Bureau
New Delhi: Finance minister Arun Jaitley on Friday introduced a bill that will replace the ordinance which the government promulgated for extinguishing the recalled currencies. Once passed by the ruling NDA-dominated Lok Sabha, the bill is expected to be brought to the Opposition-dominated Rajya Sabha as a Money Bill to ensure its smooth passage in Parliament. Rules do not permit the Rajya Sabha to debate or vote on a Money Bill and if the Upper House fails to return a Money Bill within two weeks, it is deemed as passed by the House.
The Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities) Bill states holding, transfer and receiving of the recalled ₹ 500 and ₹ 1,000 notes will amount to a criminal offence punishable with a minimum fine of ₹ 10,000. Trinamool Congress members, who had been vociferously opposing the demonetisation decision and all the more enraged against the Centre over the arrest of some of its MPs under an alleged chit fund scam, objected to the introduction of the bill.
PartyMPSaugataRoydubbedthebill was ‘illegal’ by claiming the demonetisation decision announced by the prime minister had lacked the backing of an ordinance and that it should have doneonlybytheReserveBankof India. Intheprocess,Royalsogotintoaverbal spat with Jaitley, when he claimed that the bill was beyond the legislative competence of the Lok Sabha and that the minister, being a member of the Rajya Sabha, was not familiar with the rules of Lok Sabha. Aft e r Parl i a mentary Af f a i r s Minister Ananth Kumar objected to the Trinamool Congress MP’s remarks and pointed out Jaitley was the wi n n e r o f the Outstanding Parliamentarian Award, Jaitley returned the compliment by telling the House and Roy in particular that the senior Trinamool Congress MP was wrong in many aspects of his argument and asserted that demonetisation notification had followed the due process of law. Taking at a dig at Roy, the finance minister said, “it will add to his (Roy’s) parliamentary experience since he is now getting to learn.”
Jaitley then tabled the bill with the permission of the Speaker and with the consent of the House.
Saugata Roy dubbed the bill was ‘illegal’ by claiming note ban decision lacked backing of ordinance