UPA legislation to face Modi test in LS session

  • Saubhadra Chatterji, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: May 23, 2014 01:20 IST

The new Lok Sabha’s first session will test the BJP’s treatment of the UPA’s pending legislation.

Two ordinances — on empowering SEBI against scams and tightening the law against atrocities on SC/ST—will come for Parliament’s ratification in the first session, likely to start on June 2.

Both ordinances were extremely important for the UPA as it re-promulgated the SEBI ordinance three times — last in late March after the last session of the previous Lok Sabha. The SC/ST ordinance too came into force the same month.

Congress managers maintained that BJP’s disruptive tactics did not allow the bills to be passed.

Cabinet secretary Ajit Seth’s communication to all secretaries also said that the view of the new government should be taken about the ordinances as soon as possible.

The SEBI ordinance empowers the market watchdog to order seizures and searches to crackdown on ponzi schemes, preventing financial swindle of small depositors, similar to the Saradha scam.

The bill also empowers SEBI to regulate chit funds worth `100 crore or more, and attach assets in cases of non-compliance.

Modi government’s steps will be carefully watched as he had attacked West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee over the Saradha scam in his campaign.

The SC/ST ordinance raises prison terms for most offenses against SC/STs to over ten years.

It was widely seen as a pet issue of the Sonia Gandhi-led National Advisory Council that deliberated on the matter for several months.

Currently there are 60 bills pending in Rajya Sabha that were introduced by the UPA government while 68 bills have lapsed at the end of the last Lok Sabha.

Sources added that the new government may call a longer parliament session in early July to table its first general and railway budgets and push legislation.

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