Budget session begins, PM Modi hopeful of a fruitful session

The Budget session of the Parliament began on Tuesday and is all set for a stormy start as discussions on the JNU case and suicide of Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula has been scheduled on 24th, which is the first working day of the Parliament.

President Pranab Mukherjee, while addressing both the houses ahead of the budget session, listed out various achievements of the BJP government and said that the Parliament reflects the supreme will of people and democratic temper calls for debate & discussion and not disruption or obstruction.

Post the two all-party meetings held by Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Venkaiah Naidu on Monday, the Opposition accused the government for “setting the agenda for disruption” even before the session began.

PM Modi, while addressing the media in a customary practice ahead of the Parliament session, said that he was hopeful of a ‘fruitful session’ and ‘constructive debates’. Describing the Opposition parties as “friends”, he said that they have been showing positive attitude and the whole country and the world is paying attention to the budget session.

Further, Mallikarjun Kharge, leader of Congress in Lok Sabha said that no contentious bills should be brought to the table and only bills on which there is a general agreement should be allowed. He also stated that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill would not come in the first half of the session and that a view could be taken on the fate of the bill by the second half.

Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu, however, said that the meetings with the Opposition were very positive and that they were in favour of smooth functioning of the Parliament. He also reiterated that the government was open to discussion on any issue, whether it is JNU, Pathankot terror attack, Hyderabad Central University issue or even the Jat reservation stir.

The government has a legislative agenda of 32 items for the session, out of which 11 bills are pending in the upper house and one in Lok Sabha.

Sources: The Hindu, Indianexpress

Parliament to debate JNU issue during budget session

Following an all party meeting held ahead of the budget session of the Parliament, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that the government would address all the issues and concerns raised by the opposition parties during the upcoming Parliament session.

The opposition parties have asked for a debate in the house regarding the recent JNU (Jawaharlal Nehru University) controversy, where Kanhaiya Kumar, the JNU Student Union President was arrested on charges of sedition. The government has agreed to have a debate on this matter during the budget session starting from February 23.

This is the first ever all party meeting convened by Mr Modi and he said that he is hopeful of this congenial mood translating into action in Parliament.

Further, Union Parliamentary Affairs minister Venkaiah Naidu said that there was general consensus within the parties to run the Parliament smoothly.

Also, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad blamed the BJP leaders for defaming its top leadership with the BJP’s anti-national jibe and added that the government should restrain them.

Source: The Hindu: http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/govt-open-to-debate-jnu-row-in-parliament/article8244561.ece

Image source: PTI

Budget session to commence on February 23

The Budget session will start on February 23 which will concentrate on the financial business of the government, which will present the general budget on February 29. The rail budget will be showcased on February 25 and the Pre Budget Economic session will be presented on February 26

As Assembly elections in five states are due very soon the session the government and the political parties decided that the session will not have any break or curtailment. This decision was taken at a meeting which was headed by the chair of the Cabinet Committee of Parliament affairs(CCPA), Home Minister Rajnath Singh.

Post the meeting, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu said the first half of the Budget Session will close on March 16 and the second half will be organized from April 25 to May 13. He also said that this government has  decided  to refer bills to Standing Committees for inspection during recess period, unlike the 2011 government.

Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Minister of State for Parliamentary affairs said that the government is optimistic that the coming up session will be constructive unlike the previous two sessions where the Opposition parties, including the Congress  created an impasse and hindered important reform legislations.

Sources: The HinduEconomic Times

Shiv Sena fears Budget Session washout

The Shiv Sena expressed its fear of a complete washout of the upcoming Budget Session due to the rising political heat over Rohith Vemula’s suicide. The controversy, the party fears, will not die down and gather further political attention, proving to be an obstacle for the smooth functioning of the Budget Session.

An editorial Sena mouthpiece, ‘Samaana’ said, “The Budget session (of Parliament) is merely 15 days away and it seems that the whole session will be wiped out over Rohith Vemula’s death. There will soon be Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh and thus the suicide matter will be heated up for political gains”.

In the editorial, the Sena questioned the process in which Vemula’s case was handled. The University expelled the student on disciplinary grounds after a Union Minister, Bandaru Dattatreya, allegedly intervened. However, the editorial demands to know as to why the student’s views were not allowed to be voiced. In addition, the editorial points out that in our country extensive talk are held over Assam’s ULFA and agreements are made with Maoist, Naxalites, and other terror outfits. The Sena questions, “In spite of all this, why was Rohith Vemula not given a chance to put forth his views despite his numerous pleadings”.

Source: NDTV

Image Source: oneindia