New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday targeted the Congress leadership, saying the party’s “two leaders” are unable to accept anyone from outside the ‘Gandhi family’ running the nation.
“Maybe, the two leaders of Congress are unable to accept the fact that someone outside the Gandhi family can also run the country,” he said in an oblique reference to the mother-son duo of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi.
His remark came soon after the Congress forced an adjournment in the Rajya Sabha, not allowing the constitutional amendment bill on Goods and Services Tax to be taken up for discussion.
Jaitley said the government would use every alternative mechanism to pass the Goods and Services Tax bill.
“The Centre is firm on its intention to pass the bill and all the political and constitutional options are open,” he added.
Jaitley said when the bill was sent to a select committee in the budget session, there was an understanding that it would be passed in the monsoon session of the parliament.
“The Congress’s policies were a liability on economy when it was in power, and Congress is a liability on economy even when it is in opposition,” Jaitley said.
Criticising the Congress for blocking the GST bill, Jaitley said: “GST has many special features and advantages to create one uniform market in India. All the features of GST bill are a result of consensus brought among states by the Modi-led NDA government but unfortunately Congress is in a self-destructive mode by creating hurdles in the passage of the Bill.”
Jaitley regretted that the Congress went back on its word on GST on which there was a consensus.
The minister said constitutional amendment to introduce GST would boost the GDP and bring down the prices besides bringing uniformity in the tax system across the country.
Asked if the bill had been introduced, the finance minister said: “The bill has been introduced. It was a mere formality. It was moved in the house in the last session.”