GST Bill: Arun Jaitley and Chidambaram was shaking hand with one another on the approval of the GST Bill, both government was arguing for same motto for years.
Late Wednesday, Rajya Sabha passed the GST Bill after 7 hours 46 minutes and 33 televised speeches, In officers gallery Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian and Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia shook hand and hugged like sportsmen after winning tough match. And, on the floor of the House, House, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley walked and shook hands with former Finance Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and then with P Chidambaram.
After shaking hand Jaitley almost telling to all, resolution has been passed as 122nd Constitutional Amendment by the House collectively, after years of arguing for the same motto from both sides
Throughout the day, Chidambaram played the general while Jairam Ramesh played his trusted substitute working the floor and good support from associate members, Jaitley constantly occupied with Adhia and Subramanian, and kept reading and making notes.
Before agreeing to pass GST bill MPs showing their disapproval by effortlessly moving — across party.
A story with camera:
1.49 pm: Jairam Ramesh arrived 5 min after Arun Jaitley, he was with blue file. A minute later, Manmohan Singh comes in with blue file, followed by P Chidambaram and Anand Sharma. Jaitley is engrossed in reading the Bill, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi sits behind.
2 pm: session started and Jaitley was commenting brief while Manmohan Singh reading piece of paper handed over by Anand Sharma.
The front row in Treasury was occupied by the Suresh Prabhu, M Venkaiah Naidu, Ravi Shankar Prasad. Jaitley was still speaking; Chidambaram walks up to Manmohan Singh, chats with him and with Sharma, and came back to his place in third-row. Ghulam Nabi Azad entered and Sharma speaks to Azad.
Event was watching by the Congress’s Sushmita Dev and NCP’s Supriya Sule in the visitors’ gallery.
2.10 pm: Smriti Irani came and sits next to Piyush Goyal. Jaitley was talking about Indian federalism at play, and all ADMK’s A Navneethakrishnan, TMC’s Derek O’Brien, SP’s Ramgopal Yadav were listning.
2.16 pm: Chidambaram starts speaking, Jaitley wear headphones to listen, he was busy in making a case for “clumsy drafting”, one of his junior colleagues the Chief Economic Advisor said to pay attention. As Chidambaram was repeatedly entreat Subramanian’s report to support his arguments, while Adhia and CEA both exchange a glance and scratch, on yellow stick-ons.
Subramanian passes a bunch of reports with three yellow stick-ons and a white paper to Jaitley.
In the meantime, Congress’s Motilal Vora and Environment minister Anil Dave sleep on and off.
As Chidambaram says the GST should not benefit corporate houses but the people, CPM’s Tapan Sen nods in agreement.
GST’s 13-year journey
As he completed his 31 min speech Pramod Tiwary says “beautiful” and gets thumbs up from Azad and Jairam.
2.51 pm: as BJP’s Bhupender Yadav speaks, Jaitley was taking lozenge. Jairam gets up, walks up to O’Brien and K D Singh, then goes to S C Mishra, D Raja, Prem Chand Gupta and then back to Chidambaram. Again, Jairam goes to SP’s Naresh Agarwal and O’Brien, presses his shoulder. Chidambaram again calls Jairam, and talks to him.
3.12 pm: Jaitley again talk to Adhia, Agarwal was commenting on Chidambaram on the issue of money bill, he thumps the desk. A K Antony comes in, Sitaram Yechury was taking out brief notes, while Jaitley is going through the bill. As AIADMK’s A Navneethakrishnan was opposing GST Bill, Nirmala Sitharaman walks up to the CEA, Jaitley speaks to Shamsher Sheriff, the Rajya Sabha Secretary General.
3.36 pm: When O’Brien starts speaking, BJP and the Congress both was blaming. Sharad Yadav’s was sharing his view on the money bill issue, it getting cheers from Chidambaram as JD (U) leader.
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3.59 pm: On the other side of the passageway Yechury compliments Chidambaram for “sounding better”. Jairam is working in his Macbook, CPM boss quotes Ambedkar as he reads out from his cellphone. Chidambaram calls Jairam and then walks out with his bag while Jaitley again talks to Adhia.
After two hours most of the member leaves the House then, Manmohan Singh, Jairam, Sharad Yadav, Yechury, O’Brien also.
At 4.30 Congress benches were almost empty. Only dozen of members are in the House when Ahmed Patel walks in and sits next to Rajiv Shukla.
Jairam comes back and walked up with S C Mishra, complimenting him for his speech.
NCP’s Praful Patel, TDP’s C M Ramesh gives their speech, S C Mishra goes and shakes hands with Praful Patel and sits with O’Brien.
GST bill passed:
At 4.57 pm. Jaitley, has left the House, while Chidambaram comes back in.
At 4.58 pm no one was left in the front row of the BJP and Congress, Only O’Brien sits alone in the non-BJP, non-Congress section’s front row.
As Rajeev Chandrasekhar (Ind) speaks, Chidambaram goes to the Treasury benches for the first and only time, walks up to Zee TV’s Subhash Chandra and then speaks to jurist K Parasaran, and then goes back to his seat.
When Congress’s Vivek Tankha makes his points, Chidambaram again thumps his table.
5.14 pm: CPM’s Tapan Sen went towards Smriti Irani and has a long chat. Jairam, who had left, again walks in and chats with Chidambaram.
One by one speaker make their speechs, S C Mishra goes to Chidambaram and talks to him with a copy of the Constitution.
6.53 pm: Ahmed Patel, Motilal Vora, Azad all were back when, CPI’s D Raja is praising Chidambaram’s speech. . “Hope Congress reviews its economic policies after listening to Chidambaram”, Raja says. He didn’t respond. As RJD’s Prem Chand Gupta ends his speech, Chidambaram was appreciating with thumbs up.
7.28 pm: Anand Sharma was ending his speech, at 7.33 pm, Mayawati walks in followed by Mishra. She stops by Ahmed Patel and asks him about Sonia Gandhi’s health, before taking her own seat.
8.02 pm: Jaitley finished his speech.
As voting begins and new associate pressed wrong button Congressmen heared sound and suggested them to press the green buttons to say yes.
Voting numbers were fluctuating between 197 to 203, Yechury says, “miracles are happening, even before the GST…numbers are going up.” Jaitley was positive and smile on the face with folded hands. The vote is finally passed at 9.46 pm.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi did not step in the Upper House through the day. And former PM Manmohan Singh who attended and voted did not speak a word.