New Delhi, Jan 5: The Rajya Sabha, which had 13 sittings during the winter session that started on December 15 and saw the passage of nine government bills, lost almost 34 hours due to frequent disruptions, Chairman Venkaiah Naidu lamented on Friday after the House was adjourned sine die in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The House functioned a total of 41 hours. Also Read - Pradhan Mantri Gramin Awaas Yojana: Over 6.1 Lakh Beneficiaries in UP to Receive Rs 2691 Crore Assistance
“It is unfortunate that despite discharging its responsibilities to a great extent, the august House ends up losing some degree of the esteem of the people on account of disruptions and substantial loss of functional time. Intense and passionate submissions and debates are the order of democracy, but disruptions are certainly not. I urge upon members to seriously introspect in this regard,” he said. (ALSO READ – In Rajya Sabha, PM Modi Walks up to Manmohan Singh, Shakes Hands) Also Read - Budget 2021: Will Govt Bring Cheer to Pandemic-hit Middle Class? A Look at Expectations This Year
Naidu also said it was “an opportunity for all of us to review, recall and introspect” about how the proceedings have been conducted in the House. This was the first full session after he took over as the chairman and it could have been better than what it proved, he added. Also Read - India vs Australia: PM Narendra Modi, Sachin Tendulkar Congratulate Team India After Historic Win; Fans on Twitter Go Berserk
Naidu said though Parliament was a political institution, it “cannot be an extension of politics in its typical sense which is marked by deep divisions and acrimony.”
Parliament is an important institution for furthering the shared socio-economic goals of the nation, critical to fulfilling the aspirations of citizens, he said. “The legislatures of our country including the apex Parliament need to quickly evolve the way we conduct our proceedings so as to meet the needs of our evolving nation,” he said.
Naidu said 19 private members’ bills were introduced and one was discussed at length.
During the five days when Question Hour was taken up, he said as many as 46 starred questions were orally answered and 51 members made Zero Hour submissions and another 28 made special mentions.
Meanwhile, Union minister Ananth Kumar informed that the productivity of the Lok Sabha was 91.58 per cent while that of Rajya Sabha was 56.29 per cent in Parliament’s Winter Session. “In a way this session was landmark … 13 bills were passed in the Lok Sabha and nine in the Rajya Sabha during the 13 working days of the Winter Session,” the parliamentary affairs minister told reporters.
During the session, 17 bills were introduced and 12 bills were passed by both the Houses. “I am grateful to all the parties and all members of both the houses for making this session fruitful,” Kumar said.
Replying to a question on the bill criminalising triple talaq which could not be passed by Rajya Sabha in the session, Kumar blamed the Congress for stalling the crucial legislation and alleged that the opposition came up with a new excuse everday to defer its passage.
The Congress-led Opposition succeeded in blocking the BJP-led NDA government’s move to get the Triple Talaq Bill through in Rajya Sabha. The bill has now been pushed to the Budget Session which will begin in less than a month.
The winter session, which started on December 15 and concluded today on January 5, had 13 sittings spread over a period of 22 days.
(With inputs from PTI)