In his Rajya Sabha debut, BJP president Amit Shah hit back at Congress' "Gabbar Singh Tax" barb and said that tax collected is used to fund pension, development schemes.
The Budget Session of the Parliament is set to resume on Monday after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley tabled the Union Budget 2018-19 on 1 February, the Narendra Modi's government's last full Budget before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
The first leg of the session will be held between 29 January and 9 February. Following a recess after 9 February, the Parliament will convene again between 5 March and 6 April.
Some of the issues likely to find limelight on Monday in both Houses are listed here:
Upset over "injustice" to Andhra Pradesh in Union Budget 2018-19, the TDP, a key ally of the BJP, on Sunday decided to raise the issue in Parliament.
Andhra Pradesh chief minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) president N Chandrababu Naidu asked his party MPs to pressurise the BJP-led NDA government to undo the injustice.
File image of the Parliament. PTI
At the TDP Parliamentary Board meeting in Amaravati on Sunday, Naidu said the party would begin its fight by raising the issue in Parliament, sources revealed. He made it clear that this was only the first step. The TDP chief said the party's next course of action would depend on the response of the Modi government.
The Board discussed in detail the Union Budget and the Centre's failure to address the pending issues of the state.
Some TDP leaders suggested that both the central ministers of the TDP should quit to put pressure on the BJP. Naidu, however, said the party should first raise the issue in Parliament. TDP leader and Union Minister of State for Science and Technology Y Sujana Chowdhary told reporters MPs would try to put pressure on the Centre to honour all commitments made to the state at the time of its bifurcation from Andhra Pradesh in 2014.
According to reports, the Congress and some Opposition parties have made it clear that they will press for discussion in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha on the "crisis in judiciary" following the issues raised by four senior judges of the Supreme Court in an unprecedented press conference in January this year.
The government on Friday made it clear in Parliament that it will keep away from the tussle between the Chief Justice of India and the four senior-most judges of the Supreme Court, saying the judiciary is capable of handling its "internal matters".
Responding to three separate questions in the Rajya Sabha on the "rift" in the higher judiciary, the government said it has not received any information about it from the Supreme Court.
Minister of State for Law PP Chaudhary replied in a negative when asked whether the government has "assessed the impact of the rift" in the apex court.
"Judiciary, being an independent organ under the Indian Constitution, is capable of handling its internal matters. The government is committed to the independence of judiciary," he said in a written reply to one of the questions.
Triple talaq bill
According to reports, the Narendra Modi government has said it hopes to get the controversial triple talaq bill passed in the Rajya Sabha this Budget Session.
The Lok Sabha had passed the bill seeking imprisonment for Muslim men convicted of practising instant triple talaq, but a united Opposition had stalled it in the Rajya Sabha, where the NDA lacks a majority.
Besides the triple talaq legislation, which criminalises instant talaq by Muslim men, the government is also likely to make a pitch for the passage of the OBC bill, which seeks to give a constitutional status to the OBC commission.
The BJP hopes to consolidate its support among backward classes by according constitutional status to the OBC commission, which, it believes, will give it more teeth.
Apart from the above issues, the Opposition has also protested the absence of bills for women's reservation in Parliament and the quota for SC/ST.
With inputs from agencies
Updated Date: Feb 09, 2018 12:43 PM