Bowing to the Opposition’s demands, the Government today said it would not press for introduction of a new clause in the Banking Bill that seeks to allow banks to undertake forward trading.

“The new clause (on forward trading) will not be pressed. We will debate the rest of the Bill,” P. Chidambaram, Finance Minister, told the Lok Sabha when discussions commenced on the Banking Bill.

The clause on allowing banks to do forward trading came in for stiff resistance from the Opposition parties, especially the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The introduction of this clause was opposed as it did not form part of the Banking Laws (amendment) Bill 2011 that was referred to the Standing Committee on Finance.

As introduction of the new clause would tantamount to introduction of a new Bill, senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha had a few days back sought reference of the clause again to the Standing Committee on Finance.

Chidambaram later rejected such a demand, stating that the new clause — allowing banks to do forward trading — already had the approval of another standing committee, the standing committee on food and consumer affairs.

(This article was published on December 18, 2012)
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