We are ready to discuss all issues: PM Modi

Govt to introduce 17 bills in Parliament, Opposition ready to raise Covid, patrol price issues.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in an all-party meeting on Sunday, ahead of the monsoon session, that the government is ready for a healthy and fruitful discussion on various issues in Parliament. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi quoted the Prime Minister’s statement in the meeting and said that he told the leaders of various parties that the government is ready for a healthy and fruitful discussion on the issues raised under the rules and procedure.

Thirty-three parties participated in the all-party meeting. In this, the Prime Minister said that the suggestions of the people’s representatives, especially the Opposition, are valuable, as they enrich the discussion.

The all-party meeting took place a day before the monsoon session of Parliament, attended by PM Modi and leaders of various parties in the House. Apart from PM Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Union Minister and Leader of the House in Rajya Sabha Piyush Goyal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Joshi attended the meeting. Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge and Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury also participated in the all-party meeting.

Leaders of all major parties including Trinamool Congress’ Derek O’Brien, DMK’s Tiruchi Shiva, Samajwadi Party’s Ram Gopal Yadav, BSP’s Satish Chandra Mishra were present in the meeting. Leader of the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) Apna Dal leader Anupriya Patel and Lok Janshakti Party leader Pashupati Paras were also present at the all-party meeting.

Top sources say that the government will go to the House with an agenda to pass several bills during the monsoon session of Parliament starting Monday. At the same time, the Opposition is preparing to corner the government on the issue of Covid-19 and increase in fuel price rise.

The government has listed 17 bills for introduction during this session. Three of these bills will replace the recently promulgated Ordinances as it is a rule that after the commencement of Parliament session, a bill in place of an Ordinance has to be passed within six weeks, otherwise they become ineffective. One of these Ordinances was issued on 30 June, through which anyone in the defence services has been banned from participating in protests or strikes.

The Essential Defence Services Ordinance 2021 has been brought in the backdrop of the Ordnance Factory Board’s (OFB) warning of going on an indefinite strike by the major unions in late July. Concerned associations are opposing the government’s decision to corporatise OFB. According to the bulletin issued by the Lok Sabha on 12 July, the Essential Defence Services Bill 2021 has been listed to replace the Ordinance.

At the same time, the Commission for Air Quality Management in the National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas Ordinance 2021 is another bill which will be brought in place of the Ordinance. At the same time, the Opposition is preparing to corner the government on the issue of alleged shortage of health services and distribution of vaccines to the states during the Covid-19 epidemic. The Opposition will also seek answers from the government regarding the increase in the prices of petrol, diesel and cooking gas.

The monsoon session of Parliament will continue till 13 August. The financial topics listed in the bulletin include discussions on Supplementary Demands and Grants for the year 2021-22. Vice President and Rajya Sabha chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu on Saturday appealed to the Members of Parliament to stand with the people amid the pandemic and discuss issues related to the public in the House.