Parliament Monsoon Sessions 2020 Highlights: Congress MPs stage a walkout and protest

The Parliament Monsoon sessions began on Tuesday, September 14th 2020 and scheduled to conclude on October 1 are currently underway

Parliament Monsoon Sessions 2020 Highlights: Congress MPs stage a walkout and protest

The Parliament Monsoon sessions 2020 that hold the fourth session of 17th Lok Sabha and 252nd session of Rajya Sabha began on Tuesday, September 14th 2020 and scheduled to conclude on October 1 are underway.

On Wednesday, the bills tabled were:

-The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Second Amendment) Bill, 2020

-The Aircraft (Amendment) Bill, 2020

-The National Commission for Allied & Healthcare Professions Bill, 2020

-The Institute of Teaching & Research in Ayurveda Bill, 2020

-The Homoeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2020

The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020, has been passed on Tuesday in the Lok Sabha, by voice vote. Essential Commodities (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020, was one of the three ordinances were publicized in the agricultural sector earlier this year. Tuesday, there were bills introduced to replace all 3 ordinances were introduced in the Lok Sabha.

In a major development on Wednesday’s session, the Salary, Allowances and Pension of Members of Parliament (Amendment) Bill, 2020 was passed in Lok Sabha as well. Lok Sabha on Tuesday passed a bill to reduce salaries of MPs by 30% for one year. This was done in light of the coronavirus pandemic, and to meet the exigencies arising due to the pandemic.

The Aircraft (Amendment) Bill, 2020 passed in Rajya Sabha; the Bill was passed in Lok Sabha on March 17. It seeks to amend the Aircraft Act, 1934 which regulates manufacture, possession, use, operation, sale, import and export of civil aircraft, and licensing of aerodromes. The features (1) of the bill are that it seeks to convert three aviation regulatory bodies under the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) –Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS), and the Aircraft Accidents Investigation Bureau (AAIB) – into statutory bodies to be headed by Director General appointed by the Centre. DGCA will have safety oversight and regulatory functions as mentioned in the Bill.

BCAS will carry out regulatory activities related to civil aviation security. AAIB will look into investigative activities for aircraft accidents. The central government can issue directions to these bodies with respect to their activities in the public interest. The statutory status of these bodies will help in improving India’s aviation safety rank as suggested by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

In other trivialities, Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan gave a  Zero Hour notice in Rajya Sabha owing to the alleged conspiracy overcast in the Bollywood industry. She said, "Entertainment industry provides direct employment to 5 lakh people. The industry is being harassed to divert attention from issues. It has always come forward to help the government in its endeavours. I request you to support the industry."

The most important and dramatic issue voiced over by different MPs was the issue of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) standoffs and the Sino-Indian relationships. "I want to assure the House that the morale of our armed forces is high. No one should doubt it. PM's visit to Ladakh sent a message that people of India stand behind Indian armed forces,” said Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in Lok Sabha.

Rajnath informed that China is in illegal occupation of about 38,000 sq km of Indian land in Ladakh, on top of laying a claim to around 90,000 sq km of territory in Arunachal Pradesh. He affirmed the nation facing a challenge near the LAC in Ladakh even as the Indian armed forces had high resolve. Chinese actions reflected a clear disregard for the various bilateral agreements between countries, he said.

He also added that the Chinese were told via diplomacy and military channels that it was a disruption of the status quo. He informed that India has doubled the budget for vital roads and bridges along the undemarcated border with China in recent years. This according to Rajnath was in response to Beijing's rapid infrastructure development on its side. He told parliament that China had been building up its infrastructure in the remote mountains for decades and that the government was trying to close the gap.

"The House should have full confidence that our armed forces will always rise to the challenge and do us all proud," Singh said.

After Rajnath Singh finished his address in Lok Sabha, Congress MPs staged (2) a walkout (3) from the lower house, demanding discussion on India-China border issue. The Congress MPs were upset about not being given a chance to open up a dialogue on the matter of the India-China faceoff. Congress MPs protested in front of the Mahatma Gandhi statue after they walked out of the parliament.

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