The Lok Sabha passed 13 bills on the last day of winter session amid Opposition uproar on several issues, including the DDCA controversy where Union Finance minister Arun Jaitley is facing the allegations. As Opposition, especially Congress party, persisted with its protest, the Lower house was adjourned sine die soon after the passage of listed bills. The Lok Sabha will now reconvene for the Budget session next year.
Pandemonium began soon on the floor of Lok Sabha as it assembled for the last day at 11:00 AM. The MPs of Congress party resorted to slogans demanding ouster of Finance minister Arun Jaitley over the DDCA controversy, besides raising other issues against the incumbent BJP-led NDA government.
Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, however, was firm on carrying the listed business even amid the din.
“I hope this coming year brings new hope and new energy in our lives and we reflect with resolve that in the New Year we will take conscious decision while using all Parliamentary instruments to forcefully register our dissent and disagreement, if any, and will attempt to ensure less disruptions,” she said in her valedictory remarks.
Earlier on few occasions, the Speaker asked the protesting Congress MPs to give way to debate, even threatening an action against them. She had suspended 25 Congress party MPs in the last session for their unrelenting protest.
The 20-day winter session, however, did not suffer similar fate like Monsoon session, which was a washout owing largely to the issues like Lalit Modi controversy and Vyapam scam in Madhya Pradesh. Congress party had strongly protested throughout the Monsoon session demanding resignations of Union External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje and Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
The session, which began with a special discussion on the adoption of Constitution commemorating 125th birth anniversary of the Dr. BR Ambedkar, witnessed several political developments.
The winter session further saw a passionate debate on the issue of “rising intolerance” where the incumbent Modi government already was facing criticism even before it began.
Soon after, the principal opposition party raised the issue of National Herald court case alleging the BJP-led NDA government of resorting to the “politics of vendetta”. The political crisis in Arunachal Pradesh also gave Congress another opportunity to take on the Modi government accusing it of attempting to “oust” a democratically elected state government.
And since last week, the session witnessed massive protest against the Union Finance minister over the DDCA controversy.
On Wednesday, the Lower House passed 13 bills, including the Bureau of Indian Standards Bill, the High Court and Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Bill and the National Waterways Bill.
(With inputs from the Agencies)