Winter Session of Parliament begins today. The nearly month-long session will continue till the 8th of next month. Briefing media after an all-party meeting in New Delhi yesterday, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said 45 Bills and one Financial item will be taken up during the session.
Three Bills to replace Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Ordinance and Companies (Amendment) Ordinance are slated to be passed. Some important pending legislation like Consumer Protection Bill, Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill and Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation) Bill are also expected to be considered during the session.
The Session will have 20 sittings. On the first day, Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha will be adjourned for the day after paying tributes to its sitting and former members who passed away after the Monsoon Session. Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, former Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar, MPs from Bihar Bhola Singh and Maulana Asrarul Haq and M.I.Shahnavas from Kerala is some of the leaders who passed away during the intervening period.
The government convened an all-party meeting for the smooth functioning of both the Houses of Parliament during the winter session yesterday. Addressing the all-party meeting convened by the government ahead of the Session, Prime Minister Narendra Modi 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. Mr Modi urged all political to create a constructive atmosphere during the session and collectively address issues related to the welfare of people.
At the outset, leaders observed a two-minute silence to pay homage to former Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar who passed away last month. Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu also held a meeting with leaders for the smooth functioning of the Upper House.
Thirty-one leaders including Ministers attended the meeting. They include Deputy Chairman Harivansh, leader of the House Arun Jaitley, Parliamentary affairs Minister Narendra Singh Tomar and leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad. Leaders from NCP, Samajwadi Party, AIADMK, DMK, TMC, BJD, SAD, TDP, AAP and CPI were also present.
Mr Naidu said both the Government and the opposition have the right to pursue respective agendas but that should be done while ensuring the effective functioning of the House. Mr Jaitely said the government is willing to discuss any issue if only time is properly allocated for both the Government and the opposition. The leader of the Opposition Mr Azad said that Congress also want the House to function and the bills to be passed.
Opposition parties also held a separate meeting to work out a combined strategy. It was attended by Congress President Rahul Gandhi, NCP leader Sharad Pawar, TMC Leader Mamata Banerjee, TDP leader Chandrababu Naidu, JDS leader H D Deve Gowda, NCP leader Farooq Abdullah, RJD leader Tejaswi Yadav and CPI (M) leader Sitaram Yechury among others