GST, Insurance Bill and Coal ordinance in Winter session

GST, Insurance Bill and Coal ordinance in Winter session

The government would like to push the Insurance Bill, the Coal Ordinance and the Constitutional Amendment Bill on GST in Parliament’s Winter session, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said Friday.

FM said he would be soon be talking to the Opposition including top Congress leaders for their cooperation in passing these legislations in the session, which begins on November 24.

Alluding to the government’s numbers in Parliament where it is in a minority in the Rajya Sabha, Jaitley said the support of political parties and state governments will be crucial to get important reforms implemented.

“The Parliament’s session is in a week. It cannot be ‘how can I block reforms’... I can see some groups (Opposition parties) working towards that now,” he told HT Leadership Summit. “We will have the Insurance Bill, and we will have the coal ordinance. Hopefully, these will be passed (in Parliament’s winter session). I also intend to introduce the Constitution Amendment Bill to introduce the goods and services tax,” Jaitley said.

Even though the BJP had backed the Land Acquisition Act brought by the previous UPA government, Jaitley said, “New definition of reforms is to undo a lot of what the predecessor has done.”

“We are in the process of discussing possible changes in the land acquisition law and therefore, nobody has said it will come in the winter session.”

Jaitley also said the government's other priority was at rationalising cooking gas subsidies to ensure that the subsidy only reaches the intended beneficiaries.

Jaitley added that the expenditure management commission set up by the government under former RBI Governor Bimal Jalan will soon submit its initial recommendations on how to rationalise subsidies.

Jaitley said India needs to spend more on education, health and building its rural infrastructure to become an economic superpower. “I believe that we are a country of tremendous potential that has not been harnessed before. It is challenging but it can be done,” he said.

Jaitley hoped the revised Constitution Amendment Bill to roll out GST would be introduced in the forthcoming Winter Session of Parliament.

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