The political heat over the Uttarakhand developments is threatening to spill over to Parliament as the House opens on Monday with Congress giving notices for suspension of the Question Hour and adoption of a resolution condemning imposition of Central rule in the state.
The second leg of budget session, called essentially to complete the government’s financial business, would be short as it is slated to end on May 13, days before the results of the ongoing assembly polls are declared on May 19. The notices given by leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad and deputy leader of Congress in the House, Anand Sharma, seek to corner the government by accusing it of “destabilising” a democratically-elected government in Uttarakhand.
Ever since the dismissal of the Rawat government, Congress has mounted an offensive against the Narendra Modi dispensation, alleging that BJP is eyeing to destablize its governments in other states like Himachal Pradesh and Manipur. Giving a fresh turn to the continuing political drama, Supreme Court on Friday restored Central rule in Uttarakhand till April 27 by staying the judgment of the Uttarakhand high court.
Congress is trying to project imposition of Central rule in Uttarakhand and party-ruled Arunachal Pradesh as an “attack” on the federal structure, expecting that other opposition parties will rally along in cornering the Centre. However, Union finance minister Arun Jaitley defended the imposition of Central rule and said the government is ready for a debate in Parliament.
In a TV interview, Jaitley said this was most brazen case of subverstion of the Constitution. He said this was the only instance where a government was defeated on floor of the House, but the Speaker declared the budget as passed. However, Parliament is likely to see thin attendance as assembly polls are under way in five states during the two weeks that the session will be on.
Many MPs, especially from the poll-bound states are likely to be caught up in campaigning and other poll-related responsibilities.
Though apart from the financial bill, business including discussion on demands for grants of various ministries in Lok Sabha and working of some ministries in Rajya Sabha, consideration and passing of the Railways Appropriation Bill,2016 and Finance Bill, 2016 constitute the main agenda for this brief session, the government has planned for taking some crucial bills like GST, Factories Act among others
During the 15 sittings of the session starting on April 25, besides ratification of Presidential Proclamation in Uttarkhand under Article 356 of the Constitution, two ordinances that is the Uttarakhand Appropriation (Vote on Account) Ordinance,2016 and The Enemy Property (Amendment and Validation) Second Ordinance, 2016 are also on the agenda.
Some of the other legislations that the government has planned for include the Sikh Gurudwaras (Amendment) Bill, Regional Centre for Bio-technology Bill, 2016, Electricity Amendment Bill, the Lok Pal and Lok Ayuktas and other related laws (Amendment) Bill, Merchant Shipping Bill, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development (Amendment) Bill and the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code etc.