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    Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs recommends Monsoon Session from September 14 to October 1

    Synopsis

    This is the first time in the history of Indian Parliament since 1952 that such an arrangement will be in place, where 60 members will be seated in the chamber and 51 in the galleries of Rajya Sabha and the remaining 132 in the chamber of Lok Sabha.

    As per precedent, Parliament has to be convened before the end of six months from the last session.

    NEW DELHI: The Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs has recommended a truncated two-week monsoon session, from September 14 to October 1, in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. The session is crucial as it the government has to pass Bills on 11 Ordinances while the Opposition wants to debate the impact of Covid-19 pandemic, state of the economy and the border stand-off with China.

    The CCPA, headed by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, met last week to discuss the parliament session dates, according to sources. The dates will be approved by the cabinet in its meeting and then sent to the President. The formal announcement will be made by Rashtrapati Bhawan.

    Usually the monsoon session is a month-long affair that begins in the last week of July but it had to be postponed in due to the pandemic. The forthcoming session is likely to have sittings on weekends as well which would mean 18 working days.

    The Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha will meet for four hours each daily with one House sitting in the morning and the other in the second half of the day. While the Lok Sabha will hold its sitting in the first half on September 14, it is likely that the Rajya Sabha will meet in the first half for the remaining working days of the session, sources said. This has been done to give more time to Lok Sabha which has longer sittings and more participants in debates as it has double the strength of the Upper House.

    The Parliament secretariat conducted mock drills on Monday and Tuesday to check the new arrangements that have been put in place. Sources said there were some issues with the sound system which are being corrected. Four big screens are being put up in the Rajya Sabha chamber while six other screens will be put up for members who will be seated in the galleries and the Lok Sabha chamber.

    The session is likely to debate the Covid-19 fightback, the state of the economy, problems faced by migrants, job losses and the intrusion of Chinese forces into India in Eastern Ladakh.

    Government will also move Bills on 11 Ordinances that were promulgated since the end of the budget session on March 23. These include- Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance; Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Ordinance; Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services (Ordinance); The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Ordinance; The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Ordinance; The Epidemic Diseases (Amendment) Ordinance; and The Taxation and other Laws (Relaxation of Certain Provisions), among others.
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