PM proposes reforms, Oppn wants JNU crisis resolved

PM proposes reforms, Oppn wants JNU crisis resolved

Even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi sought the Opposition’s help to push GST and other reforms to boost the economy, non-NDA leaders wanted him to rein in fringe elements.

They also urged him to intervene in the crisis arising from the arrest of a Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student leader on sedition charges, which set off public outrage and protests at the campus.

Modi’s initiative to meet about 30 Opposition leaders ahead of the Budget Session beginning next Tuesday, did not solicit commitment from the Congress on whether it will allow the Rajya Sabha to function.

PM tries to calm leadersModi, who heard others,  tried to calm leaders by saying that he was the prime minister not only of the BJP but the entire country, Parliamentary Affairs minister M Venkaiah Naidu told reporters.   Replying to the JNU row raised mainly by the leaders of the Congress and the CPM, Finance minister Arun Jaitley told them that the implications of the incidents require to be understood properly. Requesting them to wait for the enquiry report, sources said, Jaitley wondered whether any responsible political party would endorse "highly objectionable" slogans raised at a protest meet in JNU.

Other political parties Leaders from SP, BSP, JDU, TMC, BJD, AIADMK, DMK, LJSP, Shiv Sena, SAD and INLD were present at the meeting.

"We will respond to the issues raised by the Opposition and address them... I hope the congenial mood here will be translated into action in Parliament," Naidu quoted Modi as having told the meeting.

Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad clarified his party "disassociates" with all such students who raised their voices against India's unity and Constitution.  

Issue of seditionAt the same time, Azad insisted that there was no proof of sedition against Kanhaiya Kumar, the JNU student union president arrested by the Delhi police.

Opposition leader Azad displayed his angst at his leadership being labelled anti-national, to which Naidu recalled Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi equating Modi with Hitler and requested all parties to exhibit restraint.

Leaders of almost all the parties expressed their concern at the persistent disruption of Parliament proceedings, echoing the sentiment of Modi in this regard, said sources.

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