Centre on edge over GST Bill
A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress chief Sonia Gandhi had high tea together, the main Opposition continues to keep the government on tenterhooks over the Goods and Services Tax Bill.
The trouble-shooters in the government and Congress are unsure of whether the Constitution Amendment Bill can be passed in the current session of Parliament itself.
The government has managed non-NDA parties like the Trinamul Congress, Janata Dal (U), BJD, Samajwadi Party, BSP and NCP, and the TRS cannot go against the Centre.
The BJP-led NDA has a majority in the Lok Sabha. Besides, allies like the Shiv Sena, Shiromani Akali Dal, TDP, and even the PDP, are not against it. But in the Rajya Sabha a bloc of 89 members have not come on board so far because the Congress (68 members), AIADMK (11) and the Left (10) are not backing the current legislation.
Besides, the role of the DMK (4) and of nine one-member parties could be crucial if the government opts for a trial of strength.
Mrs Gandhi, who went with former PM Manmohan Singh to meet Mr Modi on Friday, told the government that the issue has to be discussed within the party forum. This could be in a “core group”, the CWC or the CPP executive.