Money Control, February 8, 2022
As many as 19 members of the Rajya Sabha – including five from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and six from the Congress – are due to retire in April. The ongoing Budget Session, therefore, will be the last for these MPs.
Veteran Congress leader and former Union Minister Anand Sharma is among those retiring. Speaking during the Motion of Thanks in the Rajya Sabha on February 7, Sharma requested the ruling party members to let him speak without interruption since it might as well be his last session in the Upper House. Sharma’s term as a Rajya Sabha member is due to end on April 2. He represents Himachal Pradesh.
Among other Congress leaders, terms of former defence minister AK Antony (Kerala), Partap Singh Bajwa (Punjab), Shamsher Singh Dullo (Punjab), Ripun Bora, and Ranee Narah (Assam) are also due to end in April.
The Budget Session, which started on December 31, will continue till April 8, with a month-long break after the first part culminates on February 11.
The BJP is the single-largest party in the 245-member House that has 237 members. The retirements will bring down the Congress’s Rajya Sabha numbers to 28 from 34 and that of the BJP’s to 92 from 97.
The BJP’s nominated members who are retiring include Subramanian Swamy, actor Suresh Gopi, actor-turned-politician Roopa Ganguly and journalist Swapan Dasgupta. Boxer Mary Kom and economist Narendra Jadhav are the other nominated members due to retire.
Swamy, Gopi, Dasgupta, Mary Kom, Ganguly and Jadhav are due to retire on April 24. Swamy had often been vocal criticising the government on policies concerning national security and economy.
The term of the BJP’s Shwait Malik (Punjab) is also ending. Malik had opened Motion of Thanks in Rajya Sabha in the ongoing Budget Session. His term ends on April 9.
KG Kenye, of the Naga People’s Front, the only member from Nagaland, is also due to retire. Loktantrik Janta Dal’s MV Shreyams Kumar (Kerala), Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Naresh Gujral of Shiromani Akali Dal from Punjab, Communist Party of India’s K Soma Prasad (Kerala), and Jharna Das Baidya (Tripura) will also retire in April.
The Rajya Sabha will have five vacancies from Punjab, which goes to the polls on February 20.
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