The Rajya Sabha has taken up the Finance Bill, 2017 for consideration and return. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley moved the Bill to give effect to the financial proposals of the Central Government for the year 2017-18. The Lok Sabha has passed it earlier.
Initiating a discussion, Kapil Sibal of the Congress alleged the Finance Bill has some provisions under which big companies can provide funds to the ruling party without disclosing their identity. He said it is a threat to fair and transparent elections. Mr Sibal questioned the government on what basis it is making Aadhaar number mandatory for filing Income Tax Returns, which he said is a violation of the Supreme Court’s order.
BJP’s Bhupender Yadav speaking in favour of the bill said, demonetization has jolted the parallel economy, which is a big challenge and threat. He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has taken several steps to encourage irrigation projects. Mr. Yadav said the government has made provisions for affordable housing in the budget. He also favored transparency in the political funding.
Sitaram Yechury of CPI-M alleged that the NDA government is promoting corruption in the name of electoral bonds and political funding. He said making Aadhar mandatory for every thisng is violative of fundamental rights. Satish Chandra Mishra of BSP criticised the government for equipping Income Tax officers with unbridled powers for search and seizure.
D Raja of CPI demanded reservation in employment for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in private sector. He alleged that indiscriminate privitasation of public sector companies is hurting the reserved categories. The discussion remained inconclusive.