GST Bill likely next week as government gets off to good start in Monsoon Session

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Just three days into the Monsoon Session of Parliament, the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha have already passed two bills each. And, the Government, encouraged by the prevalent mood, plans bringing in four more bills, in addition to the 16 lined up by it for the session at the outset.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar, while broadly sharing the Government plan, did not disclose the four new bills in the pipeline. His argument – these had to be cleared by the Cabinet first.

The Lok Sabha passed the twin legislations – The Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill, 2016 and The Dentists (Amendment) Bill, 2016 – after a long discussion lasting over five hours on Tuesday.

The Government also introduced four bills in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday – The National Institutes of Technology, Science Education and Research (Amendment) Bill, 2016, The Institutes of Technology (Amendment) Bill, 2016, The High Courts (Alteration of Names) Bill, 2016, and The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016. The IIT (Amendment) Bill, 2016 is likely to be taken up for consideration Thursday. The Lok Sabha did not conduct any business on the opening day of the session on July 18 due to an adjournment following the demise of a sitting member, Dalpat Singh Kulaste of the BJP.

The Rajya Sabha passed two bills on Monday – The Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill, 2016, as passed by the Lok Sabha earlier, and The Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012.

The Compensatory Afforestation Fund Bill, 2016 was introduced in the Upper House on Tuesday. It could not be taken up for consideration due to pandemonium on Wednesday. It was passed by the Lok Sabha on May 3.

Bills pending in the Lok Sabha: (One) The Indian Trust (Amendment) Bill, 205 (agreeing to amendments made by the Rajya Sabha); (two) Enforcement of Security Interest and Recovery of Debts Laws and Miscellaneous Provisions (Amendment) Bill, 2016 ( after report is presented by the joint committee).

Bills pending in the Rajya Sabha: (One) The Whistle Blowers Protection (Amendment) Bill, 2015; (Two) The Regional Centre for Biotechnology Bill, 2016; (Three) The Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty second Amendment) Bill, 2014; (Four) The Enemy Property (Amendment & Validation) Bill, 2016 (all these bills have been already passed by the Lok Sabha)); (Five) The Child labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012; (Six) The Homeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2015.

Bills for Introduction: (One) The High Courts (Alteration of Names) Bill, 2016; (Two) The Institute of Technology (Amendment) Bill, 2016; (Two) The Use and regulation of DNA based technology in Civil and Criminal Proceedings, Identification of Missing Persons and Human Remains Bill, 2016.

All this agenda aside, the atmosphere seems to be full of promise vis-a-vis the GST Bill. The Government is busy holding discussions with the Congress and other parties to build a consensus. If all goes well, the GST Bill may come up in the Rajya Sabha next week.

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