Union Budget Session 2017 LIVE: E Ahamed passes away, budget unlikely to be postponed

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Union Budget Session 2017 LIVE: E Ahamed passes away, budget unlikely to be postponed
  • 13:08 (IST)

    Rajya Sabha adjourns sine die

  • 12:59 (IST)

    Opposition and ruling united over bounty row on Mamata Banerjee's head

    The Lok Sabha on Wednesday condemned a BJP youth wing leader's offer for a bounty of Rs 11 lakh to anyone who beheads West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

    Raising the issue soon after the House assembled to take up the day's business, TMC member Saugata Roy said a BJP youth wing leader had made the "announcement" of giving the reward for beheading Banerjee, after police resorted to lathicharge in Birbhum district to disperse a rally during Hanuman Jayanti. "Mamata Banerjee is not only an elected chief minister but a former member of this House too. It is a serious and alarming behaviour and the House must condemn it. She is a grassroot leader and government must take action on it," he said.

  • 12:52 (IST)

  • 12:50 (IST)

    First leg of Budget Session productive: LS functioned for 113%, Rajya Sabha for 97%

    The first part of the Budget Session was very productive as Lok Sabha functioned 113 percent while Rajya Sabha 97 percent. The productivity in the second half of the budget session till now for Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha has been 112 percent and 87 percent. 

    The Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2016 and The Repealing and Amending Bill, 2017 is scheduled for consideration and passage in Lok Sabha today.

  • 12:44 (IST)

    MPs create ruckus in Parliament

    The matter echoed on in the Parliament on Wednesday as TMC leaders raised the issue in Rajya Sabha, which garnered support from other parties as well. Samajwadi Party Rajya Sabha MP Jaya Bacchan expressed anguish on the BJP leader's remark, stating that the BJP was keen on protecting cows but not women.

    TMC's Saugata Roy also strongly condemned the BJP leader's statement urging strong action against people who make such provocations. Meanwhile, BJP has distanced itslef from Varshney's comments, stating that the West Bengal state government is free to take action against him.

  • 11:54 (IST)

    Last day of Budget Session - here's a quick recap of the session

    Today is the last day of the Budget Session of Parliament. The first half of the session was held from 31 January to 9 February and after a month-long recess the second half of the session began on 9 March. During the session till now, the Lok Sabha has passed 21 bills and the Rajya Sabha 14 bills. They include the Enemy Property (Amendment and Validation) Bill, The Mental Health Care Bill, The Maternity Benefits (Amendment) Bill, The Payment of Wages (Amendment) Bill, 2017 and the crucial four supporting bills for the roll out of the Goods and Services Tax. 


    Scrapping a colonial-era tradition of presenting the Budget at the end of February, for the first time in the history of Independent India, the Government presented the annual accounts on 1 February. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday described the Budget Session as a winner for the treasury benches. He said, the government was able to secure passage of many key bills in the Parliament.

  • 11:49 (IST)

    BJP leaders distance themselves from Yogesh Varshney's comment

    BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi disowned Varshney's comment, saying: "I condemn this type of statement. The state government can take proper action." BJYM leader Varshney issued the outrageous threat while hitting out at Mamata over police action on a rally held on Sunday to mark Hanuman Jayanti in Birbhum district.

    Alleging that people were beaten up brutally by the police, Varshney described Mamata as a "demon" and said, "When I saw the video, I only had one thought... that if anyone gets me Mamata Banerjee's head I will give them 11 lakh."

  • 11:39 (IST)

    Last leg of budget session favourable for BJP govt

    The second half of the budget session of Parliament, which ends on Wednesday, has been favourable to the ruling NDA, which not only managed to push its economic reforms agenda but also put up a united front. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday told the parliamentary party of the BJP that the session was a victory for the Union government.

  • 11:34 (IST)

    Actor and MP Jaya Bachchan, along with BJP leader from Bengal Rupa Ganguly, reacting sharply to the comments against Mamata

  • 11:30 (IST)

    Bounty announced for Mamata; Rajya Sabha slams BJYM leader Yogesh Varshney

    After a day of ruckus in Parliament over the "illegal" death penalty given to former Indian Navy officer Kulbhushan Jadhav, MPs in Rajya Sabha were up in arms after a Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) leader announced a reward of Rs 11 lakh to whoever who beheads West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and gets her head.

    The remark, which came shortly after a lathicharge which happened at Birbhum district to disperse a rally raising slogans of "Jai Sri Ram" on Hanuman Jayanti, recieved a lot of flak and criticism.

    BJYM leader Yogesh Varshney told ANI, "Those who will cut and bring West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee head, I will give that person Rs.11 lakh. Mamata Banerjee never allows Saraswati Puja, fairs during Ram Navami and during Hanuman Jayanti procession, people were lathi charged and brutally beaten up. She organizes Iftar party and always supports Muslims."

  • 13:31 (IST)

    Here's what Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said about the Alwar incident in Rajya Sabha 

    “Hamare desh mein yeh message nahi jana chahiye ki hum yeh hatya ko samarthan kar raha hai… issliye it is a very sensitive issue.. crore logo ke bhavnao se judha hua mudha hai.. hamara aisa koi message nahi jana chahiye ki hum hatiya ke samarthan mein khade hue hai (This issue is a very sensitive issue. There should be no indication or message that we are backing those who are violent. It’s an emotional issue for crores of people.) Issliye jis particular state ki barein mein jo baat kar rahe hai, us tarah ki koi bhi ghatna, jis tarah ki ghatna pesh ki ja rahi hai, aise koi ghatna zameen par nahi hui hai. Jis media report ki barein mein bat ki ja rahi hai, us state ki sarkar ne pehle hi condemn kiya hai. (No such incident, as being reported, has taken place on the ground. The media report which are being cited, the concerned state government has already condemned.)"

  • 13:22 (IST)

    Version of Alwar incident reported by media is untrue: Naqvi in Rajya Sabha

    Dismissing the version of events of the killing of a Muslim man by cow vigilante groups in Rajasthan’s Alwar amid growing uproar over the alleged murder, Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Thursday said, "Jis tarah ki ghatna pesh ki ja rahi hai, us tarah ki ghatna zameen par hua nehi (The version of events presented didn’t occur)." 


    Naqvi was addressing the Rajya Sabha amid an uproar over the Alwar incident. As a united Opposition slammed the government for doing nothing against rogue groups thrashing people on the pretext of cow protection, Naqvi said, "This issue is a very sensitive issue. The message should not go from the House that we are supporting cow slaughter. Millions of people’s sentiments are involved in the issue."

  • 13:14 (IST)

    Congress slams Union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi for denying Alwar lynching

    Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, Union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi denied that any lynching had taken place in Rajasthan's Alwar. Reacting to this, Leader of Opposition, Ghulam Nabi Azad said that even the New York Times had carried a report on the lynching. 

  • 13:07 (IST)

    Rahul Gandhi blames PM Modi, RSS for rising intolerance

  • 13:06 (IST)

    Ravindra Gaikwad compares himself to Mahatma Gandhi

    The Shiv Sena MP says Airlines imposing travel ban on him is like Mahatma Gandhi being thrown out of train in South Africa.

  • 13:01 (IST)

    Not censuring Ravindra Gaikwad for unruly behaviour an opportunity lost

    It is indeed sad that the conduct of this elected representative is just another passing news shower. Everyone seems happy that airlines have banned him from flying, a minor inconvenience that will melt away in a few days. In no way does it highlight the frequent high-handedness by VIPs in India where aviation is concerned — nobody said 'enough is enough now, put on your seatbelt and shut up!'

    Read more here. 

  • 12:55 (IST)

    Shiv Sena MPs allegedly threatened to stop flights from Mumbai 

  • 12:54 (IST)

    Shiv Sena MP Anant Geete, other party  MPs heckle Civil Aviation Ashok Gajapati Raju

    The scenes turned ugly in the Lok Sabha as Shiv Sena MPs tried to gherao the minister. However, Home Minister Rajnath Singh and other ministers came to Raju's rescue. 

  • 12:54 (IST)

    Ravindra Gaikwad's defence over the Air India ruckus

    Shiv Sena MP says that he had no altercation with the AI staff. According to his version of the story, he had booked a seat in business class but was made to sit in economy class. 

    Hear his defence here. 

  • 12:42 (IST)

    Ravindra Gaikwad's defence over the Air India ruckus

    Shiv Sena MP says that he had no altercation with the AI staff. According to his version of the story, he had booked a seat in business class but was made to sit in economy class. 

    Hear his defence here. 

  • 12:32 (IST)

    Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Alwar lynching 

  • 12:27 (IST)

    Lok Sabha adjourned till 12.45 pm after ruckus over Ravindra Gaikwad's statement on Air India row

  • 12:26 (IST)

    Gaikwad remains defiant 

    I apologise to the Parliament if I've caused any hurt, but not to the Air India official: Ravindra Gaikwad,Shiv Sena MP in Lok Sabha. 

  • 12:19 (IST)

    AI staff caught me by collar: Gaikwad

    Ravindra Gaikwad says that the Air India staff assaulted him. He says that the officials of the airline caught him by his collar and his reaction was in defence. 

  • 12:16 (IST)

    Ravindra Gaikwad pleads his innocence 

  • 12:15 (IST)

    Watch Ravindra Gaikwad speaking in Lok Sabha

  • 12:12 (IST)

    Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad speaks on AIr India issue 

    Gaikwad began by saying that the airline staff treated him badly. He also added that he must get justice from the Speaker of the Lok Sabha. Gaikwad blames media for launching a trial against him. 

  • 12:11 (IST)

    Rajnath Singh on Alwar Lynching

    Rajnath Singh says that the Rajasthan government has taken cognisance of the case and that a FIR has been filed on the issue and people have been arrested. 

  • 12:08 (IST)

    Alwar lynching rocks Rajya Sabha 

    After the man lynched in Alwar died on Wednesday, the Congress party asked for a discussion on the issue. Mallikarjun Kharge says that the Rajasthan Government failed to act on the issue. He added that this was the fifth such incident in Rajasthan. 

  • 21:48 (IST)

    We are seeing history in the making: Jaitley on Lok Sabha passing GST bill

  • 21:38 (IST)

  • 21:36 (IST)

    PM Narendra Modi hails passage of GST bill

  • 20:53 (IST)

    Three of the four GST bills passed in the Parliament

  • 20:18 (IST)

    Jaitley concludes govt stand on new tax regime, requests House to pass it as is

    Arun Jaitley said that the government has strived to ensure that the GST council is representatve of everybody's interest and the body debating the draft of the bill also included representatives from each state.

    "Council will be a permanent body with a political complexion that accommodates everyone and has representatives from every state. Therefore I request the House to pass the bill unanimously drafted by a representative council as is," Jaitley said.

  • 20:15 (IST)

    No tax on agriculture under GST regime: Jaitley

    Jaitley sought to reassure the Lok Sabha on the changing tax regime as far as foodgrains are concered. The finance minister said that Agriculture as and industry and foodgrain have always remained exempt from taxes and they always will. 

  • 20:08 (IST)

    Arun Jaitley says no precedent of a taxation bill not being a money bill

    "This law seeks to replace the Central Excise law, Service Tax law etc and consolidates them into one. So here is a taxation law that alters the tax regime and replaces existing tax laws then how come it won’t be a money bill," Jaitley asked.

    He said he was ready to sit and wait for the Opposition to point out even one precedent when a taxation bill has not been treated as a money bill.

  • 20:05 (IST)

    Oppn alleges govt made GST bill a money bill only to override Rajya Sabha, where BJP does not enjoy majority

  • 20:03 (IST)

    Watch: Arun Jaitley respond to Oppn in Lok Sabha

  • 20:02 (IST)

    Anti-profiteering clause a must in GST bill to check inflation: Jaitley

  • 19:57 (IST)

    I didn't make this law, it was 7 Congress finance ministers who did: Arun Jaitley

  • 19:56 (IST)

    Compensation package was introduced only to bring on-board the manufacturing states: Jaitley

    Jaitley said that the council introduced the provision of a compensation package only for the benefit of manufacturing states as we saw that the transition to GST would affect them adversely while it benefited the consuming state.

  • 19:48 (IST)

    For one commodity their will be one rate of tax in the country: Arun Jaitley

    Jaitley said that one commodity will have a single rate of tax across the country, but it is not necessary that two different commodities enjoy the same rate of GST.

  • 19:43 (IST)

    Arun Jaitley responds to Congress' objection says parliament's right to form legislation plenary

    Jaitley said that the idea that we can deviate from GST council's recommendations is problematic and ill advised as the laws will keep changing depending on the colour of the political party in power. Therefore to protect the structure of federalism that the government is trying to implement it is imperative that the GST council has the power to decide on taxation issues.

    However, the finance minister added that the Parliament will have the power to send back a suggestion for reconsideration. He also reassured the House that the power to form a legislation is plenary to the Parliament.

  • 19:38 (IST)

    Congress questions the amount of power GST council will wield, says Parliament will no longer have power to debate/ amend taxation laws

  • 19:36 (IST)

    INC leader Veerappa Moily, interrupts Jaitleys speaks, asks if GST council is supreme power, who will protect the funds

  • 19:34 (IST)

    Arun Jaitley defends GST bill after Oppn arguments, says goods will slightly become cheaper after new tax law

  • 19:30 (IST)

    Greater impetus will be on self assessment under GST: Jaitley

    Arun jaitley told the Lok Sabha that the new tax regime is designed in a way that larger impetus is placed on self assessment of tax for the people, barring limited cases of audits. He said this will not only simplify the tax filing process but do away with multiple layers of taxation for the common man.

  • 19:25 (IST)

    GST will aide free flow of goods and services across the country: Jaitley

    "There is no free flow of goods and services in the country. The objective of the new tax regime was to establish such a system that when goods and services flow across company, taxes are levied at a uniform rate and a single window," Jaitley said. 

  • 19:22 (IST)

    Finance Minister Arun Jaitley responds to Oppn on GST

    Jaitley started off by thanking the members of Opposition for engaging in a debate. He then pointed out that the debate was crucial as once the GST bill becomes an act, it will drastically change the tax regime in the region.

    Jaitley also said that multiple window taxation system has ailed the economy since long and must be fixed in favour of the common man.

  • 18:34 (IST)

    Bishnu Pada Ray terms Narendra Modi 'Bharat ka hero'; has sycophancy got no limits?

    Bishnu Pada Ray, BJP member from Andaman and Nicobar Islands was all praise for prime minister Narendra Modi. He termed Modi "Bharat ka hero" and Arun Jaitley and other ministers as "ratan - Sab ke sab ratan." Clearly, sycophancy has no limits.

    He also said that the UPA couldn't implement GST was its failure.

The Budget Session, which begins on Tuesday, will probably not be smooth for the Narendra Modi government.

The shock demonetisation will shave off a good 0.5 percentage point from GDP growth this fiscal, pulling it down to 6.5 per cent, Economic Survey said on Tuesday while predicting "return to normal" 6.75-7.5 percent in the next financial year and calling for bold tax cuts.

The pre-Budget pointer called for cut not just in individual income tax rates and a timetable for reducing the corporate taxes but also for widening the net to progressively encompass "all high incomes".

Though the Survey did not indicate what it meant by all high incomes, the reference may be to agriculture income which is currently out of the tax net.

Invoking Mahatma Gandhi's vision of 'wiping every tear from every eye', it made a pitch for implementing Universal Basic Income (UBI) to entitle the poor with at least some income and thus eliminate poverty.

"Even the likely reduction in the rate of real GDP growth of 0.25 percentage points to 0.5 percentage points (due to junking of old 500 and 1000 rupee notes) relative to the baseline of about 7 percent still makes India's growth noteworthy given the weak and unsettled global economy which posted a growth rate of a little over 3 per cent in 2016," it said.

Indian economy had grown at a revised rate of 7.9 percent in 2015-16 and was projected to grow by 7.1 percent in
the current fiscal by the Central Statistical Organisation, which did not account for disruption caused by demonetisation.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

"Over the medium run, the implementation of the GST, follow-up to demonetisation, and enacting other structural reforms should take the economy towards its potential real GDP growth of 8 per cent to 10 per cent," said the Survey tabled in Parliament by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley ahead of Union Budget 2017-18 to be unveiled on Wednesday.


For the 2017-18 fiscal, beginning on April 1, it put the real GDP growth at 6.75 per cent to 7.5 per cent range. "Even under this forecast, India would remain the fastest growing major economy in the world."

Listing surge in global oil prices and possible eruption of trade tensions amongst the major countries as risks, it said investment-to-GDP ratio has not just been lower than the desirable levels but has been consistently declining over the last few years.

Also, it said, the savings rate has to be raised so that investment can be financed without resorting to high dose of external financing.

Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian, who led the team that prepared the Economic Survey 2017-18, termed the move to scrap 86 per cent of the cash in circulation a "radical currency-cum-governance-cum social-engineering measure".

The pre-Budget document said demonetisation is also very unusual in its monetary consequences.

To ensure that demonetisation indeed proves a catalyst for long-run changes in behaviour will require measures to complement with other non-punitive, incentive-compatible measures that reduce the incentives for tax evasion.


President addresses joint session of both the Houses of Parliament, lauds note ban, surgical strikes

Lauding the demonetisation decision and the surgical strikes across Line of Control (LoC) as "bold" decisions in the interest of the country, President Pranab Mukherjee on Tuesday favoured a constructive debate on simultaneous elections to Lok Sabha and Assemblies and funding of polls to eradicate money power.

The Government, he said, is committed to combating the "grave challenge" of terrorism and to ensure that perpetrators of such acts are brought to justice.

In his address to the joint session of both the Houses of Parliament, marking the opening of the Budget session, Mukherjee spoke about a host of government schemes and initiatives covering aspects like housing, LPG connections, electrification, healthcare, education, farmers' welfare, welfare of the specially-abled, rural development and urban development.

When he referred to the demonetisation decision to fight blackmoney and corruption as also the surgical strikes across the LoC as "bold" decisions, there was thumping of desks by the members of the ruling alliance.

"My government has taken decisive steps to give a fitting reply to the repeated incursions on our territorial sovereignty," Mukherjee said.

"On 29th September 2016, our defence forces successfully conducted surgical strikes at several launch pads along the Line of Control to prevent infiltration by terrorists," he added.

The strikes were conducted in the wake of terror attack on army camp in Uri in Kashmir in which 17 soldiers were killed.

The mention about the surgical strikes in the President's address assumes significance as some quarters had questioned whether the action had actually taken place. There were also demands for showing proof in this regard.

He also talked about the issue of holding of joint elections to the Lok Sabha and Assemblies, favouring a debate on it.

With inputs from PTI


Published Date: Feb 01, 2017 09:27 am | Updated Date: Apr 12, 2017 01:08 pm


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