A day after both Houses of the Parliament were adjourned over Opposition’s protests against the new farm laws, Rajya Sabha members have come to a consensus on when to discuss the farmers’ protests and surrounding issues in the House.
Meanwhile, Lok Sabha is set to discuss Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address on Wednesday.
Here are the latest updates:
Rajya Sabha | 9.30 am
Issue of sedition cases against journalists, politicians raised
Congress MP Digvijaya Singh raises issue of FIRs filed against politicians and journalists. He cites example of Shashi Tharoor, Rajdeep Sardesai, Mandeep Punia and Mrinal Pande, against who cases have been filed, including on charges of sedition.
He asks Home Minister to withdraw these cases.
Disruptions start as Chairman calls for discussion on Motion of Thanks for President’s address. Chairman tells those disrupting that they are not doing anything good for farmers.
As members continue to raise slogans, Chairman uses rule 255 to ask Aam Aadmi Party MPs Sanjay Singh, Sushil Kumar Gupta and N.D. Gupta to withdraw from the House.
“They wanted a discussion and when it starts, they disrupt. Let the entire country see,” says Mr. Naidu.
House adjourned till 9.40 a.m. as sloganeering continues.
Rajya Sabha | 9.25 am
BJP MP GVL Narasimha Rao raises issue of attacks on Hindu temples in Andhra Pradesh.
Around 140 such incidents noted so far, he says. He appeals to the MHA to ask the State government for a report on the issue.
NCP MP Fauzia Khan says bureaucracts have huge workload and there is a need to increase the number of seats in civil services.
Congress MP Rajmani Patel says farmers are not getting the benefits of the PM Fasal Bima Yojana.
Rajya Sabha | 9.20 am
Attack on TN fishermen by Sri Lankan Navy “unacceptable”, says Foreign Minister
DMK MP Tiruchi Siva raises issue of missing fishermen in Tamil Nadu. “They have been brutally attacked and killed,” he says. “Fishermen in Tamil Nadu compelled to give up their profession due to harassment of Sri Lankan Navy. The Prime Minister should condemn this,” says Mr. Siva.
AIADMK MP M. Thambidurai too throws his weight behind Mr. Siva. “235 fishermen from Tamil Nadu killed by Sri Lankan Navy till now,” he says, adding that the issue should be addressed urgently.
Replying to the two MPs from Tamil Nadu, Chairman Naidu says that this is an ongoing issue. “Successive governments have been doing their best. The problem should be resolved once and for all,” he says.
External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar responds that the issues has been taken up with the Sri Lankan government, and that such incidents in general, and this incident in particular are unacceptable.
“This particular incident was particularly unacceptable and this has been made clear to them,” says Mr. Jaishankar.
Rajya Sabha | 9.15 am
Zero Hour begins.
YSRCP MP Ayodhya Rami Reddy raises issue of cost overruns due to delay of projects.
Rajya Sabha | 9.10 am
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said that he has spoken to the Leader of Opposition and there is a consensus to give more time for discussion on the Motion of Thanks to the President’s address.
He says Question Hour can be suspended today, and Question Hour and Zero Hour tomorrow to take up discussion on the farm laws and farmers’ protests.
Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad says 18-19 Opposition parties decided that they want to discuss farmers issue in the additional 5 hours alloted for discussion on President’s address.
Chairman instructs Secretariat to allocate the additional time.
“Normally this is not done,” says Mr. Naidu, referring to suspension of Question Hour and Zero Hour, adding, “but there is a specific request and broad consensus, hence I am allowing it.
Rajya Sabha | 9 am
Reports of Department-related Standing Committees on Industry, Environment and Forest, and Transport, Tourism and Culture laid on table.
Reports of Department-related Parliamentary Standing Committees on Finance and Labour laid on table.
Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu warns members against recording Parliament proceedings on mobile phones. “Some members are using their mobile phones to record proceedings. Such unauthorised recording and sharing on social media can lead to breach of privilege,” he says.
Mr. Naidu warns members and the media not to use such recordings.
List of Business
Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address
Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address
Budget session of the Rajya Sabha rescheduled
The Budget session of the Rajya Sabha has been rescheduled and will conclude two days before schedule. The decision in this regard was taken at a meeting of Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu with the floor leaders of all the parties of the upper house.
The first part of the session will now conclude on February 13, with the House meeting on that Saturday, instead of February 15.
In the monsoon session of Parliament, too, the two houses had sat over the weekend. But in a loosening the COVID-19 protocol, this time, the weekend break for both the houses had been restored. The schedule, said sources, has been changed in accordance with the members’ request, as it gives the Standing Committees more time to peruse the Budget and come up with their reports before the start of the second part of the session.