Venkaiah Naidu attacks Chidambaram, hopes GST passes in Budget session

Venkaiah Naidu
Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu today rejected Congress leader P Chidambaram's remarks blaming Government for the logjam on GST Bill and alleged that Congress was "dodgy" on this issue as per its "script".

"I was taken aback by the comments of Chidambaram yesterday when he said that the economy is stuck in a groove and blamed the government for stand off on GST.
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"As Parliamentary Affairs Minister, I would like to strongly rebut Chidambaram's allegation blaming the government for standoff on GST," Naidu said.

While refusing to go into details of his interactions with senior Congress leaders from time to time on the GST issue, the Parliamentary Affairs Minister alleged, "All that I can assert with all responsibility is that Congress party steadfastly refused from its pre-Winter session script of not allowing GST Bill to be passed, come what may."

Naidu alleged that as per the "script", the Congress was "dodgy" on this important issue.

"I did not expect this from a party that ruled the country for most of the time since Independence. This kind of negativity has huge implications for the future of our country and its people. This attitude and approach will seriously dent our collective efforts to make the 21st century belong to India," he said.

Naidu appealed to Congress to give up its "negativity that was in full show in 2015" and make positive contribution to nation building in 2016.

Blaming NDA's 'stubborn and unbending' attitude for GST logjam, Chidambaram had yesterday said the ball was in government's court even as it targeted the ruling dispensation over the handling of economy, which the Congress claimed was "stuck in a groove".

The Congress leader had said that government was not able to find a way to accommodate the views of the Opposition and pass the GST Bill.

"I am afraid the government has only to blame itself and its stubborn and unbending attitude," he had said.

Countering it, Naidu said that while the government was working overtime to infuse positive energies virtually into every aspect of nation building, some opposition parties were bent upon unleashing negative energies during 2015.

"Parliament was virtually made dysfunctional during the monsoon and winter sessions of last year. GST Bill was the major victim of this negativity. Introduction of GST would make a substantial difference to the way business is done in our country. Unfortunately, the original authors of this major reform did not see the urgency in making this a reality."

Hoping that the new year will mark the beginning of an era of "positive politics", Naidu said the government is willing to "walk the extra mile" to take Opposition on board and voiced hope that the GST Bill will be passed during the Budget session as "the first positive assertion" of the collective will for building a new India.

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