Parliament logjam: Both Houses worked for 18 hours in 2 weeks

New Delhi: As the stalemate between the opposition and the government continued for two weeks, both Houses of parliament have witnessed little business except the government passing bills amid din without any proper discussion.

The flashpoint is the Pegasus project snooping controversy on which the opposition demands discussion but the government says that after IT Minister’s statement only clarification can be sought. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi termed it a “non issue”.

Amid the blame game, sources have said that both Houses of parliament could function for only 18 hours in 105 hours of scheduled sitting.

In the upper house, a proper debate was witnessed only on Covid while the Lok Sabha could not see any debate, though the government passed important legislations in both Houses of the parliament.

In Rajya Sabha in approximately 11 hours of work, the government managed to pass amendments to Marine Aids Bill, Juvenile Justice Bill and Coconut Board Bill amongst others amid din.

The Lok Sabha, on the other hand, passed the IBC Bill in 7 hours of work while both houses witnessed unruly scenes as TMC MP in the Rajya Sabha, Santanu Sen was suspended for tearing papers after snatching it from the IT Minister, while in the Lok Sabha, MPs from the opposition parties threw papers in the House.

The principal opposition party, the Congress is blaming the government for the logjam. Jairam Ramesh said, “One of the foundational principles of parliamentary democracy is that while the Government has its way, the Opposition must have its say. But Modi Sarkar believes in ‘my way or highway’. That is why Parliament is unable to function.”

The government is saying that the Opposition is not interested and after repeated attempts the opposite side is not coming down from their demands. Pralhad Joshi and Piyush Goyal did meet opposition leaders, but no solution has been found yet.

Pralhad Joshi said, “More than 315 members want the Question Hour. Despite that, opposition is behaving like this, it’s most unfortunate. The IT Minister has given detailed statement in both the Houses. This is totally non-serious issue.”

He said there are so many issues concerning the public that need to be discussed. The government does not want to pass the Bills without discussions. We are ready for discussion but they are not allowing it.

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