Business Line, December 10, 2018
The government aims to end the last full session of Parliament by doing maximum legislative business, while the Opposition is sticking to its demand for a Joint Parliamentary Committee to probe the Rafale jet deal.
The Opposition also plans to raise several issues, including the misuse of probe agencies and autonomy of the RBI, during the Winter Session of Parliament beginning on Tuesday.
The government, on Monday, called for an all-party meeting where the Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed floor leaders of parties in the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha. He said the government is always receptive to the issues raised by all political parties and is ready to discuss all issues of national importance on the floor of both Houses of Parliament.
The Prime Minister encouraged all political parties to strive to create a constructive atmosphere in the Winter Session and to collectively address issues related to the welfare of the people.
“It is a prime responsibility for all of us to contribute to the service of the nation and its people by ensuring smooth functioning of the Parliament,” he said. A host of issues were brought up by the leaders of parties during the meeting. There was a consensus across party lines for ensuring smooth functioning of Parliament without disruptions and deadlocks to be resolved through constructive discussions in both the Houses.
Emerging from the all-party meeting convened by the government ahead of the Winter session, the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said the Opposition will once again press for the formation of a JPC to look into the ₹58,000- crore Rafale jet deal.
The Opposition, he said, will take up the issue of autonomy of the RBI in the session. Amid a tussle between the government and the RBI, Opposition parties have accused the NDA regime of trying to damage every institution in the country by interfering in their autonomy and alleged the central bank was being forced to “open bank funding” to defaulting corporates.
Briefing mediapersons after the meeting, Union Minister of Parliamentary Affairs, Rural Development, Panchayati Raj and Mines Narendra Singh Tomar said the government has requested all parties, especially the opposition, for their co-operation for the smooth functioning of both Houses of Parliament.
The Minister said all parties were in favour of a productive Winter Session and the Government is always ready to discuss on the floor of the House, any issue as permitted under Rules of Procedure.
The Winter Session, starting on Tuesday and ending on January 8, will have a total of 20 sittings spread over a period of 29 days.
A total of 46 legislations are to be taken up during the session, which include 45 bills and second Supplementary Demands for Grants. Three Bills to replace Ordinances namely the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Ordinance, and the Companies (Amendment) Ordinance are slated to be passed during the ensuing session.
Further, some important pending legislations expected to be considered and passed during the Session are the Consumer Protection Bill, the New Delhi International Arbitration Centre Bill, the Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Amendment Bill, the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill, the DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill, the Major Port Authorities Bill, the Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill, the National Trust for Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities (Amendment) Bill, 2018 and the National Medical Commission Bill.
Some important new Bills that are likely to be introduced, considered and passed during this session, apart from the 3 Bills replacing Ordinances, are the Aircraft (Amendment) Bill, the Information Technology (Amendment) Bill, the Allied and Healthcare Professions Bill and the Central University (Amendment) Bill, 2018.
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