He says contentious issues should be discussed and debated in the House

The Opposition’s tactics of repeatedly stalling Parliament on the coal block allocations and other contentious issues was testing people’s faith in the “temple of democracy”, M. M. Pallam Raju, Union Minister for Human Resource Development, said on Saturday.

Addressing reporters on the sidelines of the 17th convocation of the Sri Ramachandra University, Mr. Raju said functioning in a democracy demanded that contentious issues be discussed and debated in the House.

“We are in a democracy and I think for all issues, whatever matters that the opposition may have apprehension on, there is a forum and it is called Parliament. I urge and request the Opposition to ensure that Parliament functions where it (the said issue) can be debated,” he said.

The UPA Government, he said, had a “clear conscience” and was trying its best to render good governance.

“And if the opposition feels that there was some shortcoming that happened in the past, I think we should ensure the Parliament functions where the issue can be debated... we owe it to the people of India that Parliament runs where healthy debates happen,” he said.

People were getting “frustrated”, over such repeated disruptions and fast “losing faith in the concept of democracy”, he said.

On the recent controversy over the JPC on 2G spectrum allocation scam and its chairman P.C. Chacko too, Mr. Raju felt that Opposition parties needed to realise that stalling proceedings of the House was not a solution.

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