Congress not anti-reform party: Anand Sharma on Parliament logjam
Congress leader Anand Sharma on Saturday assured the industry that his party is not "anti-reform" amid the ongoing logjam in Parliament at a time when the NDA government is keen to pass economic reform measures like the insurance bill and GST.
New Delhi: Congress leader Anand Sharma on Saturday assured the industry that his party is not "anti-reform" amid the ongoing logjam in Parliament at a time when the NDA government is keen to pass economic reform measures like the insurance bill and GST.
Addressing the concluding 109th Annual Session of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry, former Commerce Minister Sharma said: "If today we had a logjam in Parliament it is not because of the bill, it is not because we are anti-reform."
Suggesting that the party is agitating against the government in Parliament on issues like communalism and conversion, he said, "the fundamentals, the letter and spirit of your Constitution of the Republic of India is being brazenly challenged and violated.
"It is our bounden duty then as a check and balance is essential in a democracy to question and tell them stop it".
Both Houses of Parliament, particularly the Rajya Sabha, have seen many adjournments over last few days over issues like conversion and controversial remarks of some Ministers.
Sharma said that if it is being done by some fringe elements, as some "lumpens, loonies", he can understand but cannot ignore if it "Ministers and Members of Parliament" are engaging in this.
While Government is keen to pass Insurance Bill, a key reform legislation providing for raising FDI cap from 26 per cent to 49 per cent while the much-awaited GST Bill, which provides for an overhaul of taxation system, was introduced in Lok Sabha on Friday but its passage seems unlikely so far given the row between Government and Opposition on issues.
Sharma talked about the diversity of Indian society and Article 25 of the Constitution and said that faith is matter of one's choice and one has the "liberty to propagate and practice" whatever one believes in.
Senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid talked of "convergence" in place of "conversion".
The former external affairs minister said that India is a by and larger safer place to live in when compared with its neighbours.
He also appealed to all sections of society to adhere to the salient features of Indian democracy and its constitution to keep India?s social and political fabric closely knit and neatly tied up irrespective of their social and political affiliation.