Competitive pandemonium Opposition politics washes out 1st week of Parliament


Photo credit Lok Sabha TV grab

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By Manish Anand

New Delhi, July 23: The first week of the Monsoon session of Parliament was washed out, as the two Houses witnessed pandemonium amid spirited Opposition not letting go the pressure on the price rise issue.

The President election hogged the limelight, with the National Democratic Alliance nominee Droupadi Murmu romping home comfortably, as the Opposition failed to counter the tribal card of the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Both the Houses of Parliament remained paralysed even while their presiding officers made desperate bid to speak to the Opposition to get order in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha.

The Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu reached out to the Opposition leaders to help diffuse ruckus in the Upper House of Parliament.

Naidu spoke to the Congress MPs Mallikarjuna Kharge and Jairam Ramesh, Trinamool Congress Derek O’Brien and the Samajwadi Party MP Ram Gopal Yadav on enabling smooth functioning of the House.

However, the Opposition wasn’t willing to drop the aggressive posture.

The week also marked the appearance of the working president of the Congress Sonia Gandhi before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the National Herald case, and the party on the lines of protests on similar even in the case of Rahul Gandhi brought its full force in the national capital to lead charges of political vendetta.

Other Opposition parties have seemingly gone aggressive against the government amid the Congress’ aggression as part of the usual old trick that they cannot let the Sonia Gandhi-led outfit be seen only going ballistic against the Modi government.

Within the Congress, the realisation that the party has been pushed to the political margin for lack of enough aggression on the larger issues of public interest is driving the party to paralyse the Parliament.

The deadlock in the two Houses of Parliament also persists on account of complete breakdown of communication between the treasury and the Opposition benches.

Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Pralhad Joshi is struggling in his job, as he hardly enjoys any rapport with the Opposition leaders. This is in contrast to his predecessors, including M. Venkaiah Naidu in the first term of the Modi government, who used to break the ice to get the Opposition onboard after initial a few days of pandemonium.

The Parliament works on the premise that the “Opposition has its say, and the government has its ways”.

But the Opposition has been livid in the two Houses of Parliament on account of shrinking of the space for them to speak and raise issues.

This explains the summary rejection of the scores of adjournment motions brought by the Opposition in the two Houses of Parliament.

With the Parliament in pandemonium, the government on Friday began rushing with its legislative business, getting the bills passed with a semblance of discussion. This was seen in the Lok Sabha passing the Indian Antarctic Bill, 2022, which ensures that the domestic laws will be implemented for the research stations set up in the Antarctic region. Maitri and Bharti are India’s two research stations in the Antarctic.

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