Parliament gears up for historic 75-year milestone session

Key Bills and Commemoration Await in Upcoming Parliamentary Gathering

The government has scheduled a special discussion in Parliament to mark its 75-year journey, beginning with the Samvidhan Sabha on the first day of the upcoming five-day parliamentary session starting on September 18. This discussion will delve into the achievements, experiences, memories, and learnings from Parliament’s historic 75-year journey. Alongside this commemoration, the government has also listed the bill regarding the appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and other election commissioners for consideration and passage. This bill had been introduced in the Rajya Sabha during the previous Monsoon session.

The session may witness a significant transition as the proceedings of Parliament are expected to move from the old building to the new Parliament building. In addition to the discussion on Parliament’s journey, other formal business like the laying of papers will also take place during this session.

The Lok Sabha, the lower house of Parliament, has several important bills on its agenda, including ‘The Advocates (Amendment) Bill, 2023’ and ‘The Press and Registration of Periodicals Bill, 2023,’ both of which have already been passed by the Rajya Sabha on August 3, 2023. Additionally, ‘The Post Office Bill, 2023’ has also been listed for discussion in the Lok Sabha. This bill was initially introduced in the Rajya Sabha on August 10, 2023.

However, it’s important to note that the list of business items is tentative, and more items may be added as the session progresses.

The government is taking steps to ensure effective communication and coordination with political parties. A meeting of the floor leaders of all political parties has been convened on September 17, one day before the commencement of the five-day session. This meeting aims to foster cooperation and smooth functioning during the session.

The announcement of this special parliamentary session had initially raised questions about its agenda. Some members of the opposition and political observers felt that the government had not specified the topics to be addressed during the session. However, the government’s recent communication has shed light on its intentions.

Notably, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh expressed his views on the session’s agenda. He considered it to be “much ado about nothing” and suggested that these matters could have waited until the Winter session in November. However, he also hinted at the possibility that the government might have significant legislative proposals yet to be revealed.

Ramesh emphasized that regardless of the agenda, opposition parties would steadfastly oppose the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Bill, which has been a contentious issue. This bill seeks to change the composition of the panel responsible for selecting the Chief Election Commissioner and election commissioners. If passed, it would replace the Chief Justice of India with a cabinet minister in this panel, giving the government more control over appointments to the poll panel.

The bill was introduced amid strong opposition objections, with parties like Congress, Trinamool, AAP, and the Left accusing the government of undermining a Supreme Court Constitution bench order. This order had established a three-member panel, led by the prime minister and including the leader of the opposition in Lok Sabha and the Chief Justice of India, to select the CEC and ECs until Parliament framed a law on their appointment.

The proposed law, known as the Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners (Appointment, Conditions of Service, and Term of Office) Bill, outlines that a Search Committee led by the cabinet secretary will prepare a panel of five persons for consideration by the Selection Committee for the appointment of the CEC and ECs. Importantly, Section 8 (2) of the bill allows the Selection Committee to consider candidates not included in the panel suggested by the Search Committee.

Furthermore, the bill specifies that the Selection Committee, consisting of the prime minister, the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha, and a Union Cabinet Minister nominated by the prime minister, will recommend the appointment of the CEC and ECs to the president. It also clarifies that if the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha has not been officially recognized, the leader of the single largest party in opposition will be deemed to be the Leader of Opposition.

Upcoming parliamentary session promises to be significant

In summary, the upcoming parliamentary session promises to be significant, with a focus on commemorating Parliament’s 75-year journey and discussing various legislative matters. While the agenda was initially unclear, recent developments have shed light on the government’s intentions, including the contentious CEC Bill, which has faced opposition from several political parties. The session is poised to play a crucial role in shaping India’s legislative landscape.

Please, also have a look into : India’s old Parliament house: The history behind it

Related Articles

Back to top button