Civil society appeals to Hamid Ansari for 'uninterrupted discussion on Finance Bill'

Finance Bill or Finance Bully? Here's the controversial fine print

Finance Bill when it comes up in Rajya Sabha for a smooth passage on Wednesday, is expected to face some stiff opposition from parties in the opposition bench as it has been learnt that some opposition parties will press for amendments to the bill.

Besides Nariman, Girish Karnad, TM Krishna, Aruna Roy, Jayati Ghosh and 200 other citizen have expressed concern on the classification of the Finance Bill as "Money Bill" terming it as an "illegitimate" move by the government.

He said that the government has made a provision of electoral bond to cleanse the political funding and asked the opposition to adopt positive approach. Anybody with my Aadhaar number can access all details, including my financial details, my personal details, my social details like where I take a holiday, if, at all, I take one or where I spent how much of money.

Taking a dig at the BJP-led dispensation, he said some people in this government may have "the experience in snooping" and added that this also showed BJP's "double talk".

Sibal also said the bill gives "unbridled powers" to the taxman and he can conduct "search and seizure" at any premises without assigning any reason for the same to a superior authority. Accusing the government of violating the Supreme Court directions on Aadhaar, he said, "By saying that my Income Tax return would be invalid unless I give my Aadhaar number, you have violated the orders of the court".

"How have you done this through the Finance Act?" he asked.

Mr. Sibal went on to say: "This is the surest way to ensure that the political party in power gets all the funding that it needs".

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"Individuals giving more than Rs 2,000 have to disclose their identity, but corporate houses giving Rs 20 crore are not required to disclose any details under the proposed law", he said.

The Bill was returned to the Lok Sabha that will consider the amendments moved by the upper House. "Satisfactory note can not be made available to the target of the investigation", he said.

He clarified that appointments of judges or retired judges in Appellate Tribunals will be made in consultation with the Chief Justice, as has been the established practice.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, while responding to the debate on the Bill, said that some of remarks of opposition leaders were "exaggerated".

Jaitley also dismissed the Dhoni Aadhaar leak incident, saying it was a one-off case and the UIDAI, the agency that issues Aadhaar, had taken swift action, blacklisting the centre that leaked the information for 10 years. So hacking can take place even if Aadhaar is not involved. "I share the concern and that is why there is a provision in the Act that privacy norms must be maintained, it can't be made public", Jaitley said. "As mark of protest against it and against the wrong things they were doing, we moved the amendments and today, the Rajya Sabha defeated the government on four of these amendments", he told ANI.

Rules of a legislation stipulate how that legislation would be implemented, and are framed after the legislation has been passed by both Houses of Parliament and turned into a law.

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