On the eve of the opening of what is expected to be a stormy Budget Session of Parliament, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday reached out to the Opposition and said that it was the “collective responsibility” of the House to ensure its smooth working while promising that all issues raised by them would be discussed.
“I can assure you that all the issues you have referred to will be discussed adequately and appropriately in order of their priority and importance,” the Prime Minister told an all -party meet today.
The government plans to convert into Acts six Ordinances, including the contentious one on land acquisition. Opposition parties and some NGOs are agitating aggressively against the Land Ordinance and as such the session beginning tomorrow is likely to be a stormy affair.
The Prime Minister emphasised at the meeting that the smooth functioning of Parliament was important as the Budget Session is very crucial and the public looks at it with a lot of hope and expectations.
Leaders of all the political parties should collectively ensure proper utilisation of time in both Houses of Parliament “so that we can work towards meeting the hopes and aspirations of people”, Modi said as his government gears up to present its first full-fledged Budget after taking charge.
“It is the collective responsibility of the leaders of all parties to ensure that this session runs smoothly so that the House can fulfil the aspirations of the people… Hope we can collectively work for the benefit of the common man,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister was at the meeting for over an hour and later had lunch with all the leaders.
For his part, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu shared with the gathered leaders the details of the 44- item agenda of the government for the Budget session covering the financial, legislative and non-legislative business.
He said that there has been a broad consensus on five of of the six Ordinances which the government aims to convert into Acts by April 5, 2015.
Among these are the Ordinances on citizenship for overseas Indians, introduction of e-rickshaws, allocation of coal blocks and non-coal mines through open bidding.
He also said that the government was willing to address concerns, if any, on the Land Ordinance.
On the Insurance Ordinance, Naidu said that further to the suggestion of opposition parties, a Select Committee of Rajya Sabha has been set up and the same had submitted its report which amounts to a broad view of the House and there is no reason for two views in the matter.
CPI-M leader Mohd Saleem told the government that Parliament would function smoothly if the temperatures inside and outside were to remain the same.
Saleem was apparently reminding of previous disruptions of Parliament over communal statements by some members of BJP and the Sangh Parivar.