In an effort to put pressure on the Union government to move ahead with the numerous pending Bills in the Parliament, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has asked its former Member of Parliament (MP), S S Ahluwalia, to go through the recommendations of the various standing committees and suggest the party leadership what necessary amendment should be brought when the Bills come up for discussion in the house.
Ahluwalia, who was part of the standing committee on finance and joint parliamentary committee (JPC) till the time he was a member of the upper house, would act as a messenger between the party leadership and the standing committees of the Parliament.
The senior BJP leader is, for now, busy going through the recommendations of the standing committee on the Foreign Education Bill, the National Accreditation Regulatory Authority Bill that might come up for discussion in the current monsoon session of Parliament.
During his tenure as the member of the standing committee on finance, Ahluwalia had rejected a key clause in the Insurance Bill, to raise the foreign direct investment (FDI) cap in private insurance from the existing 26 per cent to 49 per cent. He had played an important role to turn down a key clause in the Banking Bill, to raise the cap on voting rights of a single shareholder in government-run banks to 10 per cent from the existing one per cent, and in other banks from the existing 10 per cent to a level proportionate to the stake.
“This is the expertise of S S Ahluwalia and we wanted to utilise it to keep the party leadership informed about the various Bills that keep coming up and what are the necessary recommendations and amendments that should be moved by the party in the Parliament during discussions. S S Ahluwalia was doing the same work earlier as the MP but now the only difference is that he will keep the party leadership informed on the issue,” said a senior BJP leader.
Ahluwalia had also played a key role to decline government’s desire to keep the FDI component out of the purview of legislation in the Pension reforms Bill.
He was also part of the standing committee when the parliamentary committee was preparing its recommendation on Direct Taxes Code.