Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday made a fresh pitch for the controversial land acquisition bill, underlining his government’s efforts to push its reforms agenda.
In an all-party meeting, the PM urged all leaders to move forward on important issues while he announced his readiness to accept “good suggestions” on the land bill, which has been stuck in parliament.
“It is time that we moved forward on the land bill, incorporating suggestions from all sides. We should move positively on this issue,” Modi said.
Political analysts viewed Modi’s remarks as an attempt to sustain the momentum on the land bill, which the opposition has dubbed anti-farmer and pro-industry, because his silence could sent a wrong message to investors his government is trying to woo.
Modi’s pitch for the land bill comes as another other key reform-related bill—the Goods and Services Tax bill—faces an uncertain future despite overwhelming support from many regional parties.
While the Rajya Sabha’s Leader of Opposition, Ghulam Nabi Azad, set the tone for confrontation in the monsoon session of parliament that begins on Tuesday, other parties did not support the Congress call for a blockade of proceedings.
The Samajwadi Party’s Ramgopal Yadav echoed the PM’s sentiments: “We need to find solutions collectively.”
The BJD demanded discussions on Indo-Pak ties and Maoist problems while BJP ally Shiv Sena wanted a debate on farmers’ problems. It also observed that farmers are facing major problems in Maharashtra, a BJP-ruled state.
The Congress found some support from CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury who said the fate of the session will depend on the government. “There should be a probe as well as action (with reference to Lalitgate and Vyapam).”
BSP leader Satish Chandra Mishra and CPI’s D Raja spoke on pending bills related to reservation.