Big Fight Over Finance Bill Amendments

PUBLISHED ON: April 1, 2017 | Duration: 49 min, 02 sec

   
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The government brought in 40 amendments to the Finance Bill 2017, some of which are contentious with opposition, constitutional experts branding them as not a 'open and shut' case to be part of a 'Money Bill'. Now Money Bills, according to the constitution, need not be passed or amended by the Rajya Sabha, where the BJP is in minority. So were the reforms in contravention to the basic spirit of the Constitution? Did the BJP brought in 'allied reforms' in the Finance Bill and not as a separate Bill to evade the Rajya Sabha? Are the poll reforms, vesting more powers on Income Tax officers, making Aadhaar mandatory for filing I-T returns and making sweeping changes to Appellate Tribunals a subversion of constitution? The government, in its defence, is falling back to previous UPA and NDA regimes where poll reforms were tagged along the Finance Bill. The other controversial justification, which the spin doctors of the government are providing is that the Upper House of the Parliament cannot block 'people's wishes' as was evident through BJP's victories in a number of elections post 2014.
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