Despite disruptions, Parliament session ends on a high

NEW DELHI (TIP): The second budget session of Parliament proved to be one of the most effective despite the shadow cast by political bickering over the imposition of President’s rule in Uttarakhand and the AgustaWestland chopper deal. The political temper, however, didn’t come in the way of the passage of key legislation, such as the insolvency and bankruptcy bill and the anti-hijacking bill, pending before Parliament for a long time.

The Lower House passed six bills apart from the financial business while the Rajya Sabha managed to clear nine. Altogether, five bills were cleared by Parliament during the session which started from April 25.

The Lok Sabha, which was adjourned sine die on Wednesday, utilised 119% of its time — working overtime to transact business. The Rajya Sabha, a vibrant battleground of the government and the Opposition, witnessed repeated disruptions but managed to work for 80% of its allotted time.

The Upper House will be adjourned sine die on Friday after customary farewell speeches by members who will retire in the next two months. Over the next two months, 53 members will retire. On Thursday, the House was adjourned for the day as a mark of respect for sitting Congress member from Gujarat Praveen Rashtrapal who passed away earlier in the day.

The question hour, the 60-minute section where MPs put questions to ministers, saw a revival after being a victim of disruptions for a long time. “Earlier, only two or three questions on average could have been answered in a session. But we now see more then five questions getting answered orally in the House on average,” said Chaksu Roy of PRS Legislative Research.

During the budget session, the productivity of the question hour, in terms of questions answered orally has been the highest in 15 years, according to PRS Legislative Research.


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