Finance Minister Arun Jaitley termed the Government’s strategy of using Money Bill route to get more Bills passed as basically a ‘constitutional remedy.’
“It’s a serious question in a Parliamentary democracy, wherein Bill after Bill, the wisdom of directly elected house is questioned by the indirectly elected house and therefore if 110 (article of the Constitution) provides an answer to it, then it is a constitutional remedy,” Jaitley told reporters here on Thursday.
Jaitley was reacting to the Opposition’s decision to seek intervention of President Pranab Mukherjee in the Centre’s strategy of ‘increasing’ the number of Money Bills.
Money Bill refers to any legislative draft seeking Parliamentary approval for contributing or withdrawing money from the Consolidated Fund of India.
Articles 108, 109, 110, 111 and 117 of the Constitution prescribe no need for the Rajya Sabha’s assent on such Bills. The upper house can discuss on such a Bill, but can not make any change.
Also, if it does not return such Bill within 14 days, the Bill is deemed to have been passed.
Since the government is in a minority in the Upper House, it is facing a tough time in getting Bills passed there.
The whole debate began when the Government proposed amendments in the RBI Act and the SEBI Act through the Finance Bill.
The Government brought black money for taxing undisclosed foreign income and asset also as a Money Bill.
“They (opposition) raised this question, but when I read to them article 110 of the constitution, they had no reply. Money Bill is nothing to do only with taxation being levied.
“Now appropriation, expenditure, cut down in the expenditure all that is money bill. So that’s squarely provided in the money bill under article 110,” Jaitley said.