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The Parliament Logjam Is Costing India Millions Of Jobs, Investment Dollars

12/08/2015 5:46 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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India's former prime minister Manmohan Singh, center, joins Congress party president Sonia Gandhi, second right and other opposition lawmakers shouting slogans during a protest in the Parliament premises in New Delhi, India, Thursday, Aug. 6, 2015. The opposition continued their protests Thursday demanding that two leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party resign for allegedly helping a former Indian cricket official facing investigation for financial irregularities. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup)

The recent Parliament standoff between the Congress-led Opposition and the ruling NDA is undemocratic and unconstitutional. Preventing the Parliament from functioning is a profound governance issue.

India's progress depends on laws passed at the supreme legislative assembly viz. the Parliament. The attempts by a group of parliamentarians to block the right to debate and seek resolution are in violation of the fundamental tenets of the Constitution.

The argument of the Congress-led Opposition that their actions are justified as "tit for tat" for what the BJP did in the past is immature and counter-productive.

Not only are they holding the Parliament hostage, but the whole country as well. India is at a point in time when we need a plethora of new legislations to propel us into the next phase of economic development.

Today's global economy is being built on a New Age technology platform that needs fresh and innovative policies to deliver economic inclusion and sustainable employment and growth. India is challenged with an archaic economic model that has little or no relevance to the present and the future. We need to urgently legislate to usher in reforms in taxation, legal issues, labour, land, education, healthcare, social welfare, industry, agriculture and infrastructure in order to eradicate poverty and deliver broad-based economic development.

The current standoff is irrational and only serves to impede economic and social progress. The action of the Opposition parties is therefore anti-national and anti-progress.

The CII has spearheaded a petition with over 15,000 signatories prevailing upon parliamentarians to carry out their legislative responsibilities so that the country can move ahead with urgently needed economic reforms. GST is one such key legislation, which needs to be enacted. The implementation of this crucial tax reform can add 1% to India's GDP growth. Apart from this, there are a number of other legislations that are urgently needed to kick-start our economy.

Every day lost in Parliament is costing the country millions of jobs and billions of investment dollars. Who is answerable and accountable to the poor, the needy, the voiceless and the downtrodden that are being denied the right to participate in economic development by the stalemate in Parliament?

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