The Rajya Sabha, where three ordinance-related bills are pending, will put in extra hours next week to clear the pending agenda but the government is yet to decide on the schedule for the land bill.
The Congress and other opposition parties have joined ranks against the land bill, dubbing it “anti-farmer” and despite the government passing nine amendments to the ordinance in Lok Sabha, the Opposition has upped its ante against the bill.
The next week of the Budget session may also keep the government on its toes over the mines bill and the coal bill. These two bills have been referred to Select Committees and the government will be keen to see that the panels submit their reports by Thursday so that the ruling establishment gets a chance to pass them in the Upper House. Failing which, the ordinances related to the two bills as well as the land acquisition ordinance will lapse on April 5.
The Upper House is still to take up the appropriation bills relating to rail budget and the general Budget.
Sources in the government said that the final call on the land bill would be taken after finance minister Arun Jaitley returns from London.
Although the BJP-led government managed to pass the land bill in Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha -- dominated by the Opposition — may refer the bill to a Select panel for further review, thereby delaying the government’s plan to pass the land acquisition bill to change the UPA’s land act that was heavily tilted in favour of farmers.