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Important bills for budget session (With Coalition hiccups come to the fore in parliament)

Delhi,Business/Economy, Sun, 01 Apr 2012 IANS

New Delhi, April 1 (IANS) With the first half of the budget session dedicated to financial business, the government has atleast 39 bills pending from previous sessions for passing when parliament resumes April 24. Theses include a host of anti-graft bills, including the Lokpal bill.


Here are some important bills slated for the session:


The Lokpal and Lokayukta bill: Lokpal bill remains the highlight of this session. Passed by Lok Sabha at the fag end of winter session last year, government has promised to bring the much awaited bill anti-graft ombudsman bill in Rajya Sabha in the second half of the session, and as indicated by sources, has also agreed to accommodate some of opposition demands to ensure smooth passage of the bill.


The Whistleblowers Protection Bill: The bill, which was passed in Lok Sabha with the Lokpal bill, was deferred for introduction in Rajya Sabha on Thursday amidst opposition demands and is to be presented in the second half of the session.


The Judicial Accountability Bill passed by the Lok Sabha March 23 on the last day before the break. The bill aims to aid setting of new probity standards in the Indian judiciary.


The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority Bill. The bill was stalled by opposition from ally Trinamool Congress. Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee has also assured that the government wishes to get the bill through in this session.


The Education Tribunal Bill: This bill seeks to create separate tribunals for handling cases related to education institutions. The bill was passed by Lok Sabha in August 2010.


The Border Security Force (Amendment) Bill. To the government's embarrassment, the bill was deferred in the Rajya Sabha with members expressing reservations over it's encroachment on state's right of maintaining law and order. The elders demanded the issue to be discussed in the chief minister's meeting scheduled for April 16, and is expected in the second half.


The Protection of Women from Sexual Harassment at Workplace Bill. Introduced in Lok Sabha in 2010, it was later amended to include domestic helps in its ambit. The bill is expected in this session.


The Mines Bill, which came in focus after allegations of a multi crore coal mining scam, has been assured to be brought in this session. However, some other government sources say major inter-ministerial consultations are still remaining to get the bill through. It seeks to consolidate and amend the law relating to the scientific development and regulation of mines and minerals under the control of the central government.


What is unlikely in the present session is the landmark food security bill. Food Minister K. V. Thomas has clearly ruled out the possibility of bringing the bill in this session as a parliamentary standing committee is yet to submit it's report on the bill.


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