Parliament proceedings | Winter session Day 9 — As it happened

The results of voting of a private member’s bill in the Rajya Sabha on December 29, 2017. Photo: RSTV

The results of voting of a private member’s bill in the Rajya Sabha on December 29, 2017. Photo: RSTV  

Lok Sabha passes Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2017; Rajya Sabha rejects a private member’s bill.

Both Houses of parliament began their day on a smooth note with Lok Sabha taking up Questions and Rajya Sabha with Zero Hour.  The House of Elders, in fact, earned praise from the Vice President for its smooth functioning.

Lok Sabha passed the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2017.

Rajya Sabha took up a private members bill to vote, a rare case in the Parliament. The amendment, unfortunately, didn't garner enough support.

Both Houses of Parliament will not function on January 1, 2018.

Live updates:

Lok Sabha | 6:00 pm

The House is adjourned for the day after a spirited address by Sunil Kumar Singh (BJP, Chatra, Jharkhand) on the private members’ bill — Sixth Schedule to the Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2015

Rajya  Sabha | 5:00 pm

As the Private Member's Bill comes to a close, Vishambhar Prasad Nishad refuses to withdraw the Bill. He seeks a vote. Voice vote appears to go in favour of the government. Nishad asks for a division.

The amendments stands negative. For the Constitutional Amendments to be passed, two-thirds majority is required.

Rajya  Sabha | 4:50 pm

Jairam Ramesh seeks a clarification. He shows previous instances and asks how a bill is classified as a money bill or not? The Chair tells the decision is taken by the Speaker.

Mr. Nishad gives his closing comments. He refuses to withdraw the bill. He seeks voting.

Rajya  Sabha | 4:30 pm

Santosh Kumar Gangwar, MoS Labour and Employment, replies. He elaborates how employment is being generated in the field of infrastructure and through flagship schemes such as MUDRA, Digital India, Start Up India and so on.

Rajya  Sabha | 4:10 pm

Alok Tiwari (SP) narrates how government is unable to provide employment to all youngsters.

Anil Kumar Sahani (JD-U) lauds Mr. Nishad to bring up this bill. Says he supports the bill. He says a man approached him saying he has passed his MA examination and wants a job. When the MP asks who manages the family, he replied his uneducated brother is earning.

D. Raja says we are a welfare state and hence the government should provide employment. He says the MNREGA addressed the problem of unemployment in rural areas. It has to be expanded in urban areas too.

Vikas Mahatme (BJP) says the government for the first time brought a skill development ministry. The problem here in not lack of jobs but lack of employable workers. Degrees don't matter, skills matter, he says.

Rajya  Sabha | 3:40 pm

Vijila Sathyanath speaks in favour of right to unemployment. She recalls how she heard a migrant labourer asking his friend to come to Tamil Nadu saying they can have food three times a day. A lot of people from North migrate to South due to unemployment. She claims youth are straying into anti-social activities due to unemployment.

Lok  Sabha | 3:15 pm

Mr. Premachandran asks government to avoid ordinance route. He withdraws the statutory motion.

The bill goes for clause-by-clause voting.

The Bill is moved and passed. 

Private Members Bill are taken up.

Lok  Sabha | 3:10 pm

Arun Jaitley raises to respond to queries raised by members.  A report by RBI found that window-dressing had resulted in showing non-performing assets as performing assets. This was the reason behind the rising NPAs in banks.

There have been instances of promoters being wilful defaulters, some of them were barred by SEBI. What do you do with promoters who are themselves responsible for NPAs? The banks, creditors, workers, all of them take a cut and the promoter gets to pay only a fraction of what he owes. Should we allow them to continue, Mr. Jaitley asks.

We want such persons to at least pay the interest and get the account operational. A majority of the members are in favour of this provision, says Mr. Jaitley.

Had we not done this all such promoters would be rejoicing, he says.

Rajya  Sabha | 3:10 pm

Thin attendance in Rajya Sabha as private members' Bills are being discussed.

Thin attendance in Rajya Sabha as private members' Bills are being discussed.  

 

Anand Bhaskar Ropulu speaks in favour of amending the constitution to grant employment as a fundamental right and provide a universal unemployment dole till one gets employment.

Inequality is drastically growing in India. This is due to growing unemployment, he says.  One per cent of richest are owning 59% of riches. Ten per cent control 80% of the economy, he says.

Vishambhar Prasad Nishad moved the Bill.

Rajya  Sabha | 3:00 pm

Rajya Sabha to extend day's business? MPs differ

Jairam Ramesh points out government business is also scheduled for later in the day. Members like D. Raja and Digvijay Singh point out that Friday's are meant for private members and not for government bills.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Vijay Goel says government will ask if the members permit, only then government bills will be taken up.

Bhuvaneshwar Kalita reminds that a consensus was reached over the time of functioning of the House.

Lok Sabha | 2:50 pm

Lok Sabha continues to discuss bankruptcy code amendments. Members use the opportunity to highlight other financial issues in their alloted time. While several members raised issues pertaining to backlog in sharing GST revenues with the States, a member raised the bail-in clause in proposed FRDI bill.

Rajesh Pandey, a BJP MP, has earlier provisions led to multiple confusion due to overlapping judicial authority.

Rajya Sabha | 2:30 pm

Rajya Sabha reconvenes. Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien is in the Chair. Private Members Bills are being intorduced.

Trinamool MP Vivek Gupta introduces three bills to establish a Labour Welfare and Rehabilitation Authority, a Women Empowerment and Welfare Authority, and an Urban Areas Equitable Development Authority.

KTS Tulsi introduces bill to protect persons with leprosy, and protection from lynching.

Lok Sabha | 2:20 pm

Jayadev Galla, TDP MP from Guntur says he supports the Bill, but raises certain issues. He suggests the period should be raised from one year to three years.

Vinod Kumar Boinapalli, TRS MP from Karimnagar, says  his party supports the bill since it punishes only dishonest persons.

CPI-M MP from Kasargod, Karunakaran, claims GST is being exploited by traders. The rates of many services and products have been hiked citing GST. Are they genuinely reaching the government? Is the government checking it, he asks.

Lok Sabha | 2:00 pm

P. Venugopal of AIADMK says small and medium companies will suffer with these amendments as there may not be many takers for such firms.  He says he supports the Bill and urges the government to consider his suggestions.

Saugata Roy (TMC) criticises the government to take ordinance route to pass Bills.  This ordinance is like throwing the baby with bath water. You are actually making things worse, he says.

Bhartruhari Mahtab speaks in favour of the Bill. He says the Bill has ironed out wrinkles and expects the Bill to be further amended taking into account the developments.

Lok Sabha | 1:30 pm

Lok Sabha takes up Bankruptcy and Insolvency Code Amendments.  Members N.K. Premachandran and Ahir Ranjan Chowdhury move statutory resolution to oppose the Bill. Mr. Premachandran claims the Bill will only help those hoarding black money. 

The amendment has been brought in to prohibit certain people from submitting a resolution or debt restructuring plan. This include wilful defaulters, disqualified directors, promoters or management of the defaulting company, and  person who has committed these activities abroad.

The Bill  bars an insolvency professional from selling the property of a defaulter to any such person during liquidation.

Rajya Sabha | 1:00 pm

Rajya Sabha adjouned. It will reassemble at 2:30 pm.

Lok Sabha | 12:45 pm

Meenakshi Lekhi says some doctors are practicing services as a business. Just like how we have regulatory body in other sectors, there should be a regulatory policy for medical services including pricing, she suggests. More members associate with her.

Lok Sabha | 12:40 pm

In Lok Sabha, Nishikant Dubey (BJP), raises the issue of rising non-performing assets. The UPA signed the Basel agreement. We have to introduce Basel III accord now. The International Finance Reporting Standards is also going to be implemented. This will only increase the stress in banks. The government should pull out of these accords, he suggests.

Rajya Sabha | 12:35 pm

Question Hour gets underway in Rajya Sabha. Video grab from RSTV.

Question Hour gets underway in Rajya Sabha. Video grab from RSTV.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

 

Internet connectivity

Why not make internet availability a fundamental right, ask members in Rajya Sabha. It cannot be made a fundamental right but we are working towards hundred per cent internet connectivity, says Ravi Shankar Prasad.

What about disruptions in internet connectivity asks another member. We are encouraging competition in the sector. This will ensure better service, the minister says.

Derek O'Brein raises the issue of privacy and security in data stored and utilised by internet companies. We are working on a law on data analysis. Retired Justice Sri Krishna is looking into it, says Mr. Prasad.

Vijila Sathyanath asks about adding more telecom towers. MoS Manoj Sinha says a subsidiary of BSNL will increase the tower peneteration. Ms. Sathyanath also asks if BSNL will be granted 4G spectrum. Mr. Sinha says we are considering this request.

Lok Sabha | 12:25 pm

Gourav Gogoi suggests eviction drive should not be done during Winter. He says people evicted in Assam forests must be adequately compensated.

Lok Sabha | 12:20 pm

'Kamla Mills compound flouted norms'

Health Minister introduces the National Medical Commission Bill, 2017.

Lok Sabha proceeds with Zero Hour. Kirit Somaiyya, a Mumbai MP, raises the Kamla Mills compound fire. Mumbai has faced several such instances due to poor fire standards. Reports are coming that the building had flouted norms, he claims.

Another MP, Arvind Sawant, too raises the Kamla Mills fire.

Rajya Sabha | 12:15 pm

Safety of Railways

How many safety-related posts are vacant in Railways and when will it be filled-up, asks a member. Railways Minister Piyush Goyal over 120 posts are pending and we are planning to recruit half of them withing nine months.

Another question on anti-collision devices. Mr. Goyal says after June 2018 all coaches produced will be LHP because these coaches have built-in feature to avoid collision.

Rajya Sabha | 12:10 pm

Question Hour in Rajya Sabha. Members are asking questions pertaining to production of pulses. SP Member Ram Gopal Yadav asks if the cost of production was considered while fixing the MSP for pulses. Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh says  the MSP is higher than the recommendations.

Lok Sabha | 12:05 pm

Question Hour ends in Lok Sabha. Members are presenting standing committee reports.

Rajya Sabha | 12:01 pm

Zero Hour ends in Rajya Sabha. Vice President lauds members for the smooth functioning of the House. A leading newspaper called "back to business... It is good to see House functioning this way, " he says.

Parliament Affairs Minister too thanks the members, especially Opposition MPs, for passage of key bills.

Lok Sabha | 12:01 pm

A member seeks to know the details of number of faculty in colleges training in alternative medicines. Are there adequate faculty in such medical colleges?, he asks.

Minister Shripad Naik says steps are being taken to increase the number of seats in post-graduate courses.

Meenakshi Lekhi (BJP) asks if the ministry plans to apply for patents on traditional medicines. Mr. Naik says steps are being taken up in this direction.

Rajya Sabha | 11:55 am

Jairam Ramesh (Congress) says ministers are not replying to the Special Mentions. The Vice President asks Parliamentary Affairs Minister to look into it.

Rajya Sabha | 11:50 am

Adulteration and misleading ads

Naresh Agrawal (SP) raises the issue of adulteration in food commodities. There is adulteration in every product today, he says. He says companies are giving false advertisements. Government should rein-in, he says.

Mr. Naidu joins the issue. He says he saw an advertisement that claims weight loss in 28 days. When Mr. Naidu approached the firm, the company responded he had to deposit more money to get the so-called medicine. "I have raised it with the Ministry,' he says.

Ramvilas Paswan, Consumer Affairs Minister, says a draft Bill on consumer protection is ready and requests members to pass the Bill.

Lok Sabha | 11:45 am

In Lok Sabha, AYUSH Minister Shripad Naik is answering questions. YSRCP MP Rajmohan Reddy is asking if the ministry plans to do something for cancer patients. Mr. Naik says the ministry is trying to work on cancer prevention through Yoga and lifestyle changes.

Mr. Reddy asks if the ministry will provide financial aid for deserving patients. The minister replies in negative.

Rajya Sabha | 11:40 am

In Rajya Sabha, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu is in Chair. Members are raising matters of urgent attention.

K.K. Raagesh (CPI-M) seeks a total waiver on farm loans. He seeks a debt restructuring plans for farm crisis. He goes on to say when corporate loans can be waived off, why not farm loans.

Lok Sabha | 11:00 am

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley arrives at Parliament.

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley arrives at Parliament.   | Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

 

Lok Sabha proceedings begin with Speaker Sumitra Mahajan in the Chair. After allowing members to lay various papers on the Table, the Speaker proceeds with Question Hour.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley replies to questions related to his ministry.  A member asks if cooperative banks will be exempted from paying income tax. Mr. Jaitley replies in negative. “Income tax is a tax on profits and there is no rationale for exempting profit-making cooperative banks from payment of income tax,” he says.

 

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Printable version | Jun 1, 2020 5:45:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/live-updates-of-day-nine-of-parliament-winter-session/article22324285.ece

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