New Delhi: With a number of key bills pending and the Winter Session to end in four days, the BJP is set to push ahead with its legislative agenda in Parliament. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to attend the Upper House, Rajya Sabha, today.
The government is in a minority in Rajya Sabha, which has seen massive Opposition protests over various issues - including the repatriation of black money, hate speech by a BJP lawmaker and lately, the conversion issue. The Opposition has demanded that the Prime Minister make a statement on the conversion issue, which the BJP has rejected.(Read: Need Ghar Wapasi for PM, Where is He, Asks Opposition)
Ahead of the session, the government had detailed 37 bills - most of which remains pending, including the GST bill, the Insurance Bill and the one to replace the Coal Ordinance.
The government now plans to table the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill, which was passed by the cabinet on Wednesday, in Lok Sabha. Steel and Mines Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said the much-awaited bill for allocation of minerals through auction route will be tabled before the session is over.
As for the insurance bill, which seeks to raise the cap on foreign direct investment in the insurance sector, the government is considering an Ordinance if the bill is not passed in this session. Along with the Congress' 66 members, 105 of the 250 lawmakers in the Upper House are against the Bill. Less than 70 support it.
Before the Winter Session started, the Opposition had planned to block the government's efforts to move key legislations in Rajya Sabha. The session ends on December 23, and most of the 22 sittings have been marred by opposition protests.
Rejecting the BJP's charge that the Opposition was stalling Parliament, the Congress today alleged that the Prime Minister was "complicit" in the issue. Congress spokesperson Anand Sharma said, "If the (Upper) House is not working, it is due to the arrogance and obduracy of the government".