RS chairman asks MPs to ensure smooth functioning of House, says disruptions disturbing

New Delhi: Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday asked MPs to ensure smooth functioning of the House during the ongoing Budget session and said they should conduct themselves in a manner befitting the trust citizens still have in India’s parliamentary democracy.
The country’s 5,000 MPs, MLAs and MLCs should resolve in this historic year to return to the people the favour they have been doing by relentlessly nurturing democracy over the last 70 years, Naidu said.
“The only way of doing so is to conduct themselves (the 5,000) in a manner befitting the trust the citizens still have in our parliamentary democracy,” Naidu said soon after the listed papers were listed.
He described the disruptions in the House during the last two sessions as highly disturbing.
“I refer to the same with fervent hope that we all reflect on the same and conduct in a manner befitting the historic time that we are passing through.” The chairman pointed out that Rajya Sabha had lost 52.10 per cent of the valuable sitting time due to disruptions and forced adjournments in the last winter session. During the preceding monsoon session last year, the loss of functional time of the House was as high as 70.40 per cent.
The Budget Session started on January 31. On the first two days, the House functioned briefly and proceedings were adjourned after laying of Economic Survey and Union Budget.
The House is now scheduled to take up Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address, and discussion on the Budget.
Earlier in the day, the House observed silence as mark of respect on the deaths of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Mpilo Tutu of South Africa in December, and David Sassoli, serving president of the European Parliament, earlier this month.
Nobel Peace Prize winner Tutu passed away on December 26 at the age of 90. He was awarded the Gandhi Peace Prize in 2005 in recognition of his invaluable contribution towards social and political transformation in South Africa and thereby contributing to the World Peace.
Sassoli died on January 11.
“The House joins the bereaved families, the Government and people of South Africa and the European Parliament in mourning the passing away of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Mpilo Tutu and His Excellency Mr. David Sassoli and conveys its heartlfelt condolences to them,” the Chairman said.
The House also observed silence as a mark of respect to the memory of those who lost their lives in the December floods in Malaysia, and the underwater volcanic eruption near the Tongan capital of Nuku’alofa in January.
Naidu also urged the members to follow social distancing norms related to the Covid pandemic.

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