Arun Jaitley, union finance minister, today tabled a bill on demonetization – The Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities) Bill 2017 – in Lok Sabha. The proceedings in the lower house of parliament were affected by an aggressive protest from MPs of Trinamool Congress (Mamata Banerjee’s TMC).
The bill looks to replace the note ban ordinance, which was approved by the president on December 30. According to rules, any ordinance, which is approved, needs to be replaced by a bill within 42 days of commencement of a parliament session. Failing to do so, the ordinance is considered lapsed.
The latest bill will remove the liability of government and the RBI on high value notes of INR 500 and INR 1000. Thus, making holding, transfer or receiving of these notes a punishable offense with a penalty of minimum INR 10,000.
The note ban bill further states that the step was taken by government on recommendations of RBI’s central board in order to remove unaccounted and fake currency notes from the financial system of the country.
Finance Minister faced a tough time while answering to the furious TMC MPs who accused Jaitley to not be familiar with the rules of Lok Sabha as he was a member of the upper house.
TMC MP Saugata Roy said that the bill was illegal as the announcement made by Prime Minister on November was was without any prior notification.