New Delhi: After blaming ”vested interests” for his shifting from the Law Ministry, new Corporate Affairs Minister Veerappa Moily today said he is ”very happy” with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi for entrusting him with the new job.
“I am very happy with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi. If they have given me this charge they might have had something in mind. They know that I am a reformist and wherever I go, I have a reform agenda,” Moily told reporters after assuming charge, playing down his earlier remarks.
Yesterday, just hours after the Cabinet reshuffle, an apparently peeved Moily had suggested “campaign by the vested interests” behind his change in the portfolio. Moily had also said that he could not be “hanged” for the “sins” of other ministries.
“Yesterday was yesterday. Today I am here, in this Ministry and I look forward to future,” Moily said.
Asked what would be his utmost priority as the new MCA Minister, Moily said it would be to pass the pending Companies Bill 2009.
“In the monsoon session. That will be the topmost agenda. Even as the Law Minister I had studied the Bill and it is one of the best Bills. We will meet the monsoon session deadline and we will make sure that it comes up before the Cabinet immediately,” he said.
The Companies Bill which was reintroduced in Parliament in August 2009 has already missed two earlier deadlines for consideration and passage.
Further, commenting on whether the provision of 2 per cent CSR spend by companies should be made mandatory in the new Companes Bill, Moily said,”I don’t want to say anything on the numbers but CSR is something that we should cultivate. …We don’t want to adopt any coercive method but want to imbibe this kind of CSR culture in the corporates.”
The Government has been maintaining that it would be mandatory for corporates to disclose to shareholders whether they have made a contribution of two per cent of net profit toward corporate social responsibility activities.
The Companies Bill, 2009, retains the provision of two per cent of the average profit of the preceding three years for corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities, amid strong opposition from industry to the clause.
On being asked if he would review the issues which has shown the Ministry in a bad light after CBI questioned its reports on the companies involved in the 2G spectrum controversy, Moily said,”You will have to give me time to understand the issue, but I can say that nothing will be passed without proper examination.”