After a week-long disruption of Lok Sabha over the issues of farms laws and farmers’ agitations, Lok Sabha resumed discussion on motion of thanks to the President’s address to the joint sitting of both the Houses of Parliament.
Continuing her speech, BJP member Locket Chatterjee praised the Narendra Modi government for its leadership during the Covid-19 pandemic. She termed the low death rate and high recovery rate as a victory of the government. She appreciated the government for its ‘Vaccine Maitri’ initiative saying that the neighbouring countries have thanked India for providing a helping hand during this difficult time. She said, the government has taken several landmark steps like demonetization, introduction of GST and progressive farms laws for the welfare of the people.
Participating in the discussion, senior party leader of Congress, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury raised several questions over the government’s attitude towards the farmers’ agitation against the farms laws. He alleged that the government is at war with the farmers and is trying to malign the farmers’ protest. Referring to farmers’ protest on 26th January, he demanded the constitution of a Joint Parliamentary Committee to find out the real conspirators. Mr. Chowdhury said, the country’s image is getting worse due to the way the government is dealing with this matter. He said, Indian civilization is a celebration of plurality which accommodates differences. He added one should not be afraid of debate and dialogue as Indian civilization has always encouraged these. He also alleged that secret information pertaining to Balakot strike has been leaked and critical information was shared with a media person which is a cause of concern from the security point of view. DMK leader TR Baalu said, farming community must not be disturbed at any cost but unfortunately the poor farmers are suffering at the outskirts of Delhi. Mr Baalu demanded that all the three farms laws should be withdrawn without any delay.
TMC MP, Mahua Moitra also demanded to repeal the farm laws saying that India is witnessing so many restrictions today. She said, farmers have been labelled as anti-national and the police lodged the FIR against them to end the peaceful protest. Pratprao Jhadav of Shiv Sena demanded for constitution of Joint Parliamentary Committee saying that farms laws have been passed in a hasty manner by ignoring the demands of the farmers. He said, these laws will promote contract farming and end the existing mandi system which will prove to be detrimental for the farmers. Rajiv Ranjan Singh of JDU appreciated the efforts of the government in tackling the Covid-19 situation. He said, indigenous vaccines are available in the country and India is supplying the vaccine to other countries also. He said, opposition parties are playing politics on the issue of farms laws. BJD MP Pinaki Misra said, the government must come up with an impartial enquiry on the incidents that occurred on 26th of January. He added that the top leadership of the country must step in vigorously and talk to farmers. He also urged that the Centre must implement the recommendations of the Swaminathan Committee. BSP MP Ritesh Pandey said that it is condemnable that farmers are being termed as terrorists. He said, the Centre must listen to the issues of the farmers and repeal the farms laws. Jagdambika Pal of BJP said, NDA government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership has done a remarkable job in dealing with COVID-19 situation in the country. On the farmers’ agitation, Mr Pal said, the Centre has no ego or else so many rounds of talks would not have been held with the farmers. Congress MP, Manish Tiwari urged the centre to listen to the demands of the farmers. He also demanded that a discussion must be held in the Parliament on the issue of Chinese’s aggression on Indian border. A.M. Ariff of CPI(M) demanded for independent enquiry of the incidents happened on 26th January during the farmers’ agitation in the national capital. P Ravindhranath of AIADMK lauded the steps taken by the government for containing the spread of Covid-19 pandemic. He said, the world largest Covid-19 vaccination drive is underway in the country and the supplies of vaccines have been made to various countries. Dr. Amol Ramsing Kolhe of NCP raised questions over the government saying that crony capitalism is being promoted in the country in the name of a free economy. He alleged that the government is trying to malign the farmers’ agitation. Anupriya Patel of Apna Dal, Uday Pratap Singh of BJP, Jasbir Singh Gill of Congress among others also participated in the discussion.
As the House met after first adjournment at 5 PM, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh urged the members of the Lok Sabha to continue discussion on motion of thanks on the President’s address. He said, it is the duty of every member to maintain the dignity of the House and this tradition must be maintained by the members. He said, India has a healthy democracy and he is certain that every party wants to uphold it. Lok Sabha was adjourned till 5 PM following opposition uproar against three farm laws. When the House met in the evening, members from several opposition parties trooped into the well raising slogans against the government and demanded to repeal the new farms laws. Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla urged the agitating members to maintain order in the House and asked them to go back to their seats. Amid noisy scenes, the Speaker tried to run the Question Hour saying that question hour is important in parliamentary democracy. As the pandemonium continued, the House was adjourned.
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