76% say no to disruption: survey
Mint, December 19, 2015
believes it is right in obstructing Parliament. However, a
survey by instaVaani reveals that three out of four people think
it is wrong in disrupting the ongoing winter session.
proportion?nine out of 10 people?say political parties need to
collectively take responsibility and accord priority to
24% of those surveyed said the Congress is right in obstructing
Parliament, compared with 43% in August, suggesting a clear
erosion of support for its actions.
Like the monsoon
session, the ongoing winter session is heading for a washout.
The session has seen little business transacted, especially in
the Rajya Sabha, following disruptions led by the Congress.
Unlike in the Lok Sabha, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA)
is in a minority in the upper House.
The survey, which
was conducted among 522 people across the six major metros of
New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad,
found that 76% of the respondents said the opposition led by the
Congress is not right in disrupting Parliament.
In what will put
pressure on the Congress and other political parties who are at
the centre of the protests, 89% of respondents wanted all
political parties to show collective responsibility and ensure
priority to legislative business.
?It is not fair to
comment on a survey because we have not seen the full report.
There are crucial bills which need to be discussed in both
houses of Parliament. The government has so far not succeeded in
building consensus but talks are going on. These are very
important bills and different parties have different views on
it. The government should accept views from all political
parties and incorporate them in the bills. We have opposed some
of the bills because our views differ from those of the
government,? said a senior leader of the Congress, not wanting
to be named.
?The Congress party
under its president Sonia Gandhi has stalled legislations and
development work because the NDA government has taken a
zerotolerance stand against corruption. The cases against Karti
Chidambaram, Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh and
the recent National Herald case are all old cases which were not
started by the government,? said Shrikant Sharma, national
secretary of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
?The Congress is
blocking development of the country by not allowing Parliament
to function. Once the winter session is over, BJP will lead a
nationwide campaign against Congress on corruption,? Sharma
Court judge A.K. Sikri said political parties needed to strike a
consensus on a policy agenda. He was speaking on the sidelines
of the annual general meeting of industry lobby Federation of
Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry on Friday.
?If a few parties
can come together to form a government with a minimum common
programme, why can?t all the parties think of a minimum common
programme in the interest of the country?? he asked.
?Why not have
certain issues, those issues which will be for economic
development, maybe social issues also, and other kinds of
issues? Why should we not shed our party politics, come
together, sit together, all the leaders of the different
parties, and devise some common programme for the development of
the country? It may include GST (goods and services tax), it may
include SEZs (special economic zones), it may include even land
Meanwhile, at an
all-party meeting called on Friday by vice-president Hamid
Ansari, who is chairman of the Rajya Sabha, members of the NDA
and the opposition parties agreed that the upper House should
function without any disruption for the remaining three days of
the winter session. They, however, failed to agree on allowing
passage of the legislation to enable GST.
?There is no
consensus on the passage of the constitutional amendment bill to
allow rollout of GST, but the parties have agreed to pass other
pending bills. Another crucial legislation, the real estate
bill, can also be taken up for discussion next week and there is
a possibility that it will also be taken up for discussion in
the three remaining days of the winter session,? a member of the
NDA who attended the meeting said on condition of anonymity.
In the meeting, the
parties agreed that legislative business must be carried on
without any disruption and crucial bills like the Scheduled
Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities)
Amendment Bill, 2015, the Whistle Blowers Protection (Amendment)
Bill, 2015, the Anti-Hijacking Bill, 2014 and the Child Labour
(Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2012 should be
debated and discussed in the upper House.
people interviewed for the instaVaani survey said scrapping the
antidefection law will result in better functioning of
Act of 1985, by forcing parliamentarians to vote along party
whips, has rendered parliamentary debate moot. It is impossible
to see in India a debate like the recent debate in the UK on
sending troops to Syria (where a majority of the Labour shadow
cabinet supported the motion in defiance of their party whip),?
said Karthik Shashidhar, Bengaluru-based analyst and a Mint
columnist. ?This leads opposition parties to believe that there
is no constructive mechanism for them to influence debates and
parliamentary procedures, encouraging them to resort to
obstructionist tactics,? he added.
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