Government fails to withdraw three bills in Rajya Sabha

 The government on Tuesday failed to withdraw three bills on which it had brought ordinances in Rajya Sabha, after the opposition parties opposed a motion to withdraw the bills.

IANS| Last Updated: Feb 24, 2015, 16:02 PM IST

New Delhi: The government on Tuesday failed to withdraw three bills on which it had brought ordinances in Rajya Sabha, after the opposition parties opposed a motion to withdraw the bills.

The government had listed The Insurance Laws (Amendment) Bill 2008, The Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill 2014, and The Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Bill 2014 for withdrawal from the Rajya Sabha.

Opposition leaders were, however, not in agreement.

"I would like to request leader of house, the three bills they want to withdraw are now property of the house. It is fine that the government with permission of house can withdraw them. But we have not discussed it yet. How can they know if we will support or be against the bill," Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad said.

"How can they withdraw it without debate? I request it should not be withdrawn or it will be difficult with us to permit withdrawal," he said.

Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader Sitaram Yechury also said the bills should be debated first.

"After the ordinances were brought you are moving bill to be withdrawn. On one of the bills, a select committee has been constituted. Such withdrawal is against the propriety of the house," Yechury said.

"Let us debate the bill. We have moved a motion we are opposing the withdrawal," he said.

Responding to the opposition members, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the bill can be withdrawn if the opposition wants an "infructuous bill" to remain property of the house and occupy its calender.

"When there is a valid law in existence, that law has to be introduced in one house, in this case the Lok Sabha, and a bill substituting the ordinance has simultaneously to be introduced. If there is a valid law in existence, an earlier law identical or otherwise pending in one of the houses as a bill becomes infructuous," Jaitley said referring to the three bills, on which government has already brought ordinances.

"Constitution has conferred certain amount of constitutional wisdom to this house, and one of the wisdom is that this house does not deal with infructuous piece of legislation," Jaitley said.

"If members, because of the reality of legislative numbers, want an infructuous piece of legislation to occupy the calender and space of this house I have no difficulty," he said.

"Once the other bill becomes a law the infructuous bill that you say is property of the house can be gifted to each one of you," the finance minister said taking a dig at opposition.