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‘Exercise responsibility in application of retrospectivity’

Senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha critisised the government for the proposed retrospective amendments and said that the government needed to exercise great responsibility in the application of retrospective amendments

Written by ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi | Published: May 8, 2012 2:26 am

Senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha today critisised the government for the proposed retrospective amendments and said that the government needed to exercise great responsibility in the application of retrospective amendments.

“This Parliament is competent to pass legislation which will have retrospective effect and no court and nobody can take away this authority of Indian Parliament. But in the application of retrospectivity,we have to exercise great sense of responsibility. That is our look out and I am not commenting on individual case…,” Sinha said while initiating discussion on the Finance Bill. Though praising finance minister Pranab Mukherjee for accommodating the demands of stakeholders regarding the “controversial” Budget proposals,Sinha criticised the ballooning current account deficit and its financing through short-term debt flows. Calling it an area of utmost concern,he also pointed to the declining trend in the foreign currency assets and said that it appeared to be inching towards a situation similar to pre-1991.

Blaming the profligacy of the UPA-I during the election year,when P Chidambaram was the finance minister,Sinha quipped,“The original sin was committed in the year 2008-09… It is because of the liberty taken against the fiscal deficit in 2008-09 that we have not been able to bring it back on track till now … Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act was thrown out of the window,result of which we are witnessing today.” Making a case for compensating the states for foregoing revenue on account of the gradual phasing out of the central sale tax (CST),Sinha said the revenue department surrendered Rs 7,827 crore meant for CST compensation but it did not compensate the states.

Sinhaspeak

BJP leader and former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha,who initiated the discussion on the Finance Bill,peppered his speech with a number of humourous quips that had the members in splits. Some of them follows:

* “At the outset I wish to place my views with an apology. If the Finance Minister moves to the big house on the other side after this session,then he will not keep anything against me for whatever I am going to say today.” — on speculations of Pranab Mukherjee being a front runner for the President’s post

* “Our sorrow is reduced that we lost the 2009 polls and these people have been left to stew in their own juices” — on NDA failing to come to power in 2009

* “Mint and melon soup,kababs,blueberry moose graced the Prime Minister’s lunch table in New Delhi on April,08… the next sentence is,two lame ducks were also there” — quoting from The Economist on the meeting between Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on April 8

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