Insurance, pension Bills on agenda for Budget session

Insurance, pension Bills on agenda for Budget session New Delhi: The government proposes to push through key economic reform Bills in areas such as insurance, pension and corporate law in the Budget Session of Parliament beginning on Thursday.

The Budget for 2013-14, to be unveiled on February 28 by Finance Minister P Chidambaram, will itself address key issues like declining industrial output, widening fiscal deficit and decelerating economic growth.

Besides Budget, which will be preceded by Economic Survey, the heavy economic agenda includes passage and consideration of long pending Bills on insurance, pension and Food Security Law.

While the insurance and pension bills seek to raise foreign direct investment (FDI) cap in the sector from 26 percent to 49 percent, the Food Security Bill seeks to provide subsidised food grain to people below poverty line.

The important economic reforms bills on the agenda include Food Security Bill, Forward Contracts (Regulation) Amendment Bill and the Companies Bill, which is yet to be vetted by the Rajya Sabha.

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Amendment) Bill, which seeks to dilute the qualification for appointment of Presiding Officers of the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT), would also be taken up for consideration and passage.

Giving details of the legislations listed for consideration and passage, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath said the session will provide 34 sittings, 21 during the first part and the remaining 13 after the recess.

As per the list, 39 Bills are listed for consideration and passage and 20 for introduction.

The Companies Bill is aimed at updating the laws dealing with corporate sector, while PFRDA Bill seeks to give statutory power to the pension regulator.

The 115th Constitutional Amendment Bill which will pave way for introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) has not been listed in the agenda for the Budget session.

PTI