Demonetisation: Disruption, Not Debate is Opposition's Mantra, says Jaitley
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley addresses reporters outside Parliament on Thursday. (Photo: Pankaj Tomar)
New Delhi: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday hit out at the Opposition for disrupting Parliament over the Centre's demonetisation policy and for demanding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi be present in the House for any discussion.
His comments came after the Opposition forced the adjournment of the Rajya Sabha immediately after lunch as Modi was not present in the House.
"The Opposition wants to run away from debate... They keep finding new reasons to disrupt the House," he said. "The PM will come to the House and take part in the debate, but he cannot be present in the House throughout."
BSP supremo Mayawati said, "We want the PM to come to the House and speak... If you want a real survey (on demonetisation), then dissolve Parliament and call for fresh elections."
Congress's Ghulam Nabi Azad weighed in and said, "We were assured that PM Modi will be present in the House during discussion on demonetisation and reply also." After this, the Opposition stormed the Well of the House and forced the Chair to adjourn the session.
"The Opposition is not ready for a debate. They were taken by surprise when PM came to the House," Jaitley said. "The government wants discussion on demonetisation.... Government will brief Parliament on the steps taken by them," he added.
He also said hit out at the Congress and former prime minister Manmohan Singh, saying they were silent when various scams were taking place during the UPA government.
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