Finance minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday shrugged off concerns that the upcoming monsoon session of Parliament might be disrupted over the controversy surrounding two of the government's senior ministers and former IPL commissioner Lalit Modi.
He was replying to a question on the possibility of the monsoon session getting washed out over Congress' demand for resignation of external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje over their alleged links with Modi.
"Some people may be of relevance to television channels, (but) they have no relevance to governance as far as the government of India is concerned," he told reporters in New Delhi.
The Narendra Modi-led government has been facing opposition flak over the involvement of Swaraj and Raje in the row over providing travel documents to the former Indian Premier League (IPL) chief. The government has been shielding its party leaders with BJP leaders saying that there was no illegality involved and the issue does not call for the resignation of either Swaraj or Raje.
The Prime Minister has maintained a silence despite opposition demands of his response on the issue.
The monsoon session of Parliament will commence from July 21 and conclude on August 13. There will be only 18 working days in a span of a total of 24. Lok Sabha may adjourn for the day on the first day of the session due to the death of Dileep Singh Bhuria, sitting BJP member from the Ratlam (ST) constituency of MP.
The government wants to move forward on two important legislation — The Constitution (122nd Amendment) (GST) Bill, 2014, and the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2015. The GST Bill is currently being examined by a Rajya Sabha select committee headed by BJP member Bhupendra Yadav. The land bill is being considered by a joint committee of the two Houses.
The minister was hopeful that no political party will take anti-growth and anti-development stand to block the crucial bills to amend the land bill and bring in a uniform pan-India Goods and Services Tax, which he termed as "extremely necessary".
"There is a lot of importance of these bills to the country's economy... the government is hopeful that no political party will adopt a negative approach on the issue of development of the country," he said.
Jaitley, however, evaded a direct response to the controversy in which Lalit Modi has been dragging various politicians, including him.
After the Congress, the CPM has also given hint that it will not sit down quietly over the issue. trouble was brewing for government in the monsoon session of Parliament over the Lalit Modi-related issues.
Party general secretary Sitaram Yechury said on Wednesday that if the government did not institute an inquiry and those involved in the controversy do not step down, it would have repercussions in Parliament.
"Since all the major opposition parties have come out against the Lalit Modi issue, there is going to be uproar on the issue in the session coming ahead," Yechury said during an interaction with journalists at the Indian Women's Press Corps (IWPC).
"After all, the present finance minister (Arun Jaitley) had said disruptions are a democratic method for the opposition," he said.
(With PTI inputs)