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Parliament Day 12 highlights: Demonetisation has led to squeezing of terror funds, says Arun Jaitley

The finance minister said as a result of note ban, terrorists were forced to rob banks for money, and the number of stone throwers in Jammu and Kashmir has gone down in last few months.

india Updated: Aug 01, 2017 21:48 IST
HT Correspondent and Agencies
HT Correspondent and Agencies
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Parliament,Live Updates,Monsoon Session
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley speaks in the Rajya Sabha during the ongoing monsoon session, in New Delhi on Tuesday. (PTI)

A united opposition stalled proceedings in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday, protesting the government’s decision to hike the prices of domestic cooking gas (LPG) by Rs 4 per cylinder every month to eliminate all subsidies by next March.

Congress, Samajwadi Party, Trinamool Congress, Bahujan Samaj Party and Left MPs stormed into the Well of the House shouting slogans seeking withdrawal of the decision.

The issue was raised by TMC’s Derek O’Brien who gave a notice under rule 267 that seeks to set aside business of the day to discuss an important issue.

The LPG subsidy issue was raised in the Lok Sabha as well.

Outside the Parliament, Dharmendra Pradhan said, “Subsidy will not be cut down, it will only be rationalised. The (Opposition) uproar is baseless.”

The Opposition in Rajya Sabha also protested and questioned the NOTA provision for the upcoming election to the house. Deputy leader of the Congress Anand Sharma said the decision to provide the NOTA option had been made without amending the Constitution or the law as per the direction of the Election Commission

Highlights of Day 12 of the Parliament’s Monsoon Session:

7.18 pm: Expansion of GST will help benefit states: Jaitley.

6:46 pm: Demonetisation has led to squeezing of terror funds, including in Jammu and Kashmir, says finance minister Arun Jaitley in Lok Sabha.

3:15 pm: Rajya Sabha moves to consider and vote on Right of Children to Free and Complaint Education (Amendment) Bill, 2017.

3:10 pm: TMC’s Sudip Bandhopadhyay speaks about impact of demonetisation and GST. He says that a GST-oriented supplementary demand for grant may be necessary.

2:49 pm: The discussion partially goes back to Demands for Supplementary Grants.

2:45 pm: Meanwhile, the Rajya Sabha is discussing the violation of conditions of Letter of Permit by foreign trawlers in deep sea fishing through a Calling Attention motion.

2:40pm: It has turned into a discussion on demonetisation.

BJP’s Nishikant Dubey responds. He quotes the World Bank chief as saying demonetisation will clean up Indian economy and cites OECD report saying the move will have short-term cost, but will be good for the economy in the long-run.

2:35 pm: Venugopal says demonetisation and hasty implementation of GST has destroyed the economy. He concludes by quoting Lincoln, “You can fool all the people some of the time, you can fool some people all the time, but you can’t fool all the people all the time.”

2:32pm: Venugopal says everyone agrees GST is good but criticises the implementation of the regime saying there are still multiple taxes.

2:30 pm: Venugopal talks about deteriorating situation in Kashmir and job loss in 2017.

“We discussed the lynchings yesterday. Everyone in the Opposition agrees it is terrible. Only the BJP ministers are justifying it,” he says.

2:20 pm: Lok Sabha reconvenes. House begins discussion on Supplementary Demands for Grants.

Congress MP KC Venugopal asks what the real impact of demonetisation has been. “We, the members of the Lok Sabha, have the right to know the exact figures— how much demonetised currency has come back, how many new notes have been printed and how much black money has been unearthed. We are expecting answers from the finance minister today.

2:05 pm: Government moves to withdraw The Participation of Workers in Management Bill, 1990. Motion is passed.

2:02pm: Rajya Sabha reconvenes. Jairam Ramesh raises issue of new rules regarding Finance Act notified by the government in June but not tabled in the Upper House yet.

1:15 pm: Lok Sabha adjourned for lunch till 2:15 pm.

1:05 pm: Amid ruckus, MPs continue to present their notices. BJP’s Anju Bala says making cow the national animal like Nepal has will reduce violence against the animal.

1:00 pm: Zero Hour continues even as TMC MPs continue to protest in raised voices. Chair asks names of the companies mentioned by Somaiya to be expunged.

12:57 pm: BJP’s Kirit Somaiya says one of the shareholder companies allegedly involved in a scam reportedly has the West Bengal chief minister’s as reigstered address.

TMC MPs shout and raise objection.

12:52pm: Kirron Kher says stalking should be considered crime against women. Invasive stalking should be criminalised, she says

12:49 pm: TMC’s Saugata Roy refers to resignations by Congress MLAs in Gujarat and BJP’s alliance with JD(U)’s Bihar. “There are allegations the government is using its money power,” he says.

12:41 pm: Outside the Parliament, Dharmendra Pradhan says, “Subsidy will not be cut down, it will only be rationalised. The (Opposition) uproar is baseless.”

12:35 pm: In the Lok Sabha, BJP’s Varun Gandhi asks whether MPs need higher salaries when the Cabinet and state lawmakers take salary cuts to support farmers. Tamil Nadu farmers have been holding protests in Delhi over farmer suicides.

Gandhi wants MP salary examined in 15th Finance Commission.

12:29 pm: Rajya Sabha reconvenes. Opposition raises of NOTA issue.

Chair asks, “How does this relate to the Question Hour?”

“This is the ultimate question!” one MP replies.

As Opposition MPs raise their voices and demand answers, Chair adjourns house till 2 pm.

12:24 pm: Earlier in the day, during the BJP parliamentary party meeting, Amit Shah pulled up MPs over their absence in the Rajya Sabha on Monday, PTI reported.

“When the party issues a whip, members must be present in the House. The party president has taken a serious view of the absence of members. He said it should not have happened and must not be repeated,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said

A BJP MP present in the meeting said Shah wondered if the absentee MPs should be named as the party, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has repeatedly stressed on the need for their presence in Parliament.

12:20 pm: Opposition MPs shout slogans. Many walk out.

12:16 pm: In the Lok Sabha, KC Venugopal of Congress raises issue of LPG subsidy and rising oil prices.

RSP’s NK Premachandaran says, “The oil companies were told about this in March. Prices increased in July. Why is the government hiding its policies?”

Opposition demands response from minister.

12:13 pm: Derek O’Brien intervenes and says , “Opposition united on issue of LPG subsidy.”

Chair tries to resume Question Hour but is interrupted. Ruckus in the house. Rajya Sabha adjourned for another 10 minutes.

12:10 pm: Sharma asks, “How can the EC remove the NOTA option without coming to this House and amending laws? This will be examined but now is not the Time.”

“Only the courts can direct the EC,” Leader of the House, Arun Jaitley says.

Opposition raises concerns about the Presidential and Vice-Presidential elections.

12: 05pm: Rajya Sabha resumes business. Vice President Hamid Ansari in the Chair.

Congress’ Anand Sharma says there was no NOTA option in the Rajya Sabha election. Chair asks him to take it up with Election Commission.

12:02 pm: Rijiju refutes allegation that refugee camp in Jammu and Kashmir. “You misunderstand. We are not making concentration camps. They are coming there and getting concentrated there,” he says.

Speaker disallows all adjournment notices.

11:58am: In the Lok Sabha, Congress’ Mallikarjun Kharge questions the government’s response that no accurate date is available about number of illegal immigrants in the country.

Impossible to get accurate number, but we are taking steps to have special task forces and prosecute such immigrants, replies MoS Kiren Rijiju.

11:47 am: Rajya Sabha adjourned for a second time till noon.

11:45 am: Speaker exhorts members to listen to Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s response. Opposition MPs walk to well of the house shouting slogans.

11:40 am: Rajya Sabha resumes.

Ghulam Nabi Azad on government’s rollback of LPG subsidy: This government is killing the poor. This is unacceptable.

11:30 am: TMC’s Derek O’Brien questions government notification on gas subsidies that says rates are going to be hiked month on month by Rs 4 and by March all LPG subsidies will be eliminated. O’Brien says the government is not keeping its promises.

Uproar in Rajya Sabha over house not being informed about government notification.

Chair adjourns house for 10 minutes.

11:15 am: Zero Hour in the Rajya Sabha.

Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad raises issue of members of the house not being invited to the Parliament Annexe foundation stone laying ceremony on Monday.

No one from the Rajya Sabha including the Chairman and Deputy Chairman were invited. Members of the house were not told about the event.

Chair PJ Kurien takes note and says Secretary General of the Rajya Sabha has already written to the Lok Sabha regarding this impropriety.

11:05 am: Question Hour begins in Lok Sabha. AIADMK’s Elumalai Vellaigounder asks the government if more Centres will be set up to expedite creation of Aadhaar cards?.

11:00 am: Legislative business in the two Houses of Parliament today

In the Lok Sabha

Discussion and voting on Supplementary Demands for Grants for 2017-18 & Demands for Excess Grants (General) for 2014-15

Bills for consideration and passing:

The Banking Regulation (Amendment) Bill, 2017
The Central Goods and Services Tax (Extension to Jammu and Kashmir) Bill, 2017
The Integrated Goods and Services Tax (Extension to Jammu and Kashmir) Bill, 2017

In the Rajya Sabha

Calling attention on the situation arising out of violation of conditions of Letter of Permit by foreign trawlers in deep sea fishing in Indian seas and the action taken by the Government on it.

Bill for withdrawal:

The Participation of Workers in Management Bill, 1990

Bills for consideration and passing:

The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill,2017
The Factories (Amendment) Bill, 2016
The Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2017

First Published: Aug 01, 2017 11:14 IST