New Delhi: The government in an 'unprecedented move" added as many as 40 amendments to the Financial Bill on Tuesday, and a fresh proposal to cap transactions at Rs 2 lakh is been included, instead of 3 lakh as provided in the Budget.
As the bill was proposed in Lok Sabha for concederation, many opposition parties like TMC,BJD and RSP came forward in protest against the introduction of the amendments to 40 Acts, saying it was being done in the form of "black-door entry".
The amendments to the laws like Companies Act, Employees Provident Fund, Smuggling and Foreign Exchange Act, TRAI Act and Information Technology Act, have been moved with an aim of making the functioning of tribunals more efficient by merging the smaller ones and reducing their numbers from 40 to 12.
Howerver, the objections by the opposition were overruled by the Speaker Sumitra Mahajan who ruled that the 'incidental provisions' involved in the amendments constitute a 'Money Bill' and therefore can be considered as part of the Financial Bill.
Among the amendments made to the Financial Bill was a provision to cap cash transaction at Rs 2 lakh. Erlier, while presenting the Budget on February 1, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had proposed the cap to be Rs 3 lakhs to be effective from April 1.
Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia in his tweet after the amendment was moved said, a penalty of equal amount would be levied in case of violation of the provision.
While, Jaitley defending the move to make amendments, invoked first Lok Sabha Speaker G V Mavalankar. He said if a substantial portion of a bill deals with imposition or abolition of tax, then even if it has other incidental provisos, it still can be introduced as a Money Bill.
"You cannot have bill that says government will spend Rs 100,000 crore without detailing how it would be spent. You cannot have a bill where you say there will be 5 per cent without specifying how it will be the deduction, what will be the power of asserting officer, appeal provision... No tax can be imposed without reference to courts or tribunals.. These are incidental provisos..., Jaitley said.
The Minister said that opposition's objection is born out the language in Article 110(1) and ever since the inception, the House has been debating on the word 'only' used in the Article.