Sun, Dec 11, 2016 | updated 07:19 PM IST

Govt.'s prerogative to take call on PM's intervention: Jaitley on demonetisation debate

Updated: Nov 17, 2016 18:56 IST

New Delhi [India], Nov. 17 (ANI): With a riled opposition adamant on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's presence in Parliament during the discussion on demonetisation, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday said it is not necessary for the former to intervene in every parliamentary debate, adding it is the government's prerogative to decide as to who should be fielded.

"The government is a collective responsibility and, therefore, it is the prerogative of the government to decide who should reply to a debate. Bulk of the debate has already taken place. I have attended the debate and the government will decide who will reply to the debate," Jaitley told ANI in an exclusive conversation.

"If the government thinks it necessary at an appropriate time for the Prime Minister to intervene, we will consider it at that stage. But it's not necessary that there is an intervention in every debate," he added.

The Finance Minister also lashed out at the Congress Party for its "irresponsible" behavior in the Parliament.

"The Congress is a political party which has remained in power. What selfish motive does it have to weaken this move of the government? We would have expected the Congress Party to support it. This is not patriotism that you connect this with terrorism. Even the terrorists use black money. So, this statement of the Congress is irresponsible and I condemn it," he said.

Proceedings in both the Houses of Parliament were washed out today over demonetisation issue. The Lok Sabha managed to transact business only till noon while the Rajya Sabha witnessed five adjournments before both the Houses were adjourned for the day.

Speaking in the Rajya Sabha, Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad accused the government of burdening the public with "wrong policy" and said that the deaths due to demonetisation are higher those who died in the Uri terror attack.

"Pakistani terrorists did not kill even half of our people in Uri than those who have died due to the government's wrong policy," he said.

Union Information and Broadcasting Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu hit back at Azad in the Upper House and said that the Congress leader was insulting the nation by making such comments and must apologise. (ANI)