Here are the latest updates :
Matters of urgent public importance are being taken up.
Gaurav Gogoi, INC member from Assam says that the Union govt must go back on its proposal to amend the IAS (Cadre) Rules-1954.
House adjourned till 4 p.m. on February 7, 2022.
I congratulate India for bringing COVID-19 under control, and appreciate the sanctioning of 16 new medical colleges all over India, member Dr. B. Venkata Satyavathi from Andhra Pradesh says.
Pratima Mondal, AITC member from West Bengal says: "In the current scenario, India has been performing poorly across all sectors. The government ensures good security. Over 35 lakh children are severely malnourished and more than 10 lakh are actually malnourished. Every Indian can't manage to have three meals a day."
Agatha Sangma, NPP member from Meghalaya, asks the Centre to include Khasi and Garo languages in the 8th schedule of the Constitution. She even asks for Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) to be repealed.
Bills are being taken up for introduction.
Motion of Thanks on the President's address continues.
Sangam Lal Gupta, BJP member from UP speaks about how the Centre is working towards India's safety and security.
It's because of the tax exploitation that our petrol and diesel prices are up, says Adv. Dean Kuriakose, INC member from Kerala. "Government should answer about this issue. So many people have committed suicide. This govt is planning to mercy kill the MNREGA programme. For the last six months, Kerala MNREGA workers are waiting for their wages. What about our agriculture sector? Our workers are suffering, there is no basic infrastructure. We want another special package. That's why I oppose the motion of thanks on the President's address," he says.
Nihal Chand Chuahan, BJP member from Rajasthan says: "PM Modi has made the country a vishwaguru. India has been taken towards a path of development."
Ram Shiromani Verma, BSP member from Uttar Pradesh speaks about job losses, closure of businesses; says that these issues weren't mentioned in the address. He says that farmers' income was not talked about, and that the government instead of doubling farmers' income, the government wants to end the farmers.
Indra Hang Subba, SKM member from Sikkim says: "Our border is still isolated with no reliable mobile network. Our State is a small one and the Centre should take it seriously and bring connectivity to the Indo-Nepal border. We are proud as some of our brothers have represented India at the Olympics as well." He thanks the PM for the help granted to the State during the pandemic.
Bills are taken up for introduction.
Motion of Thanks on the President's address continues.
K. Navas Kani, IUML member from Tamil Nadu speaks in Tamil about farmers' issues, asks what the government did for farmers welfare. He mentions Stan Swamy's struggles and talks about other issues that stem from religious discrimination against Christians. He says that laws that the entire State doesn't want to accept, are being forced onto them.
Mr. Kani even mentions that students weren't allowed in Karnataka for wearing a hijab. "The government should show compassion to the poor people that is being shown to corporate sector instead."
Aparupa Poddar, AITC member from West Bengal: "The address has failed to mention the job losses, adverse impact of Corona, migrant labour crisis, falling GDP, border exchange with China resulting in death of our soldiers, protests and death of our farmers and increasing inequality."
Ms. Poddar mentions price rise in various commodities, job losses, and says that we aren't seeing achhe din. " Many families are seeing wage reductions. Our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has been leading the fight against price rise. She has been demanding that the money should be equally distributed. I oppose the motion of thanks of the President's address. We are moving towards the failed economic policies which has an adverse effect on farmers and other employments."
Let's not break India, let's make India one; let's uphold democracy, Dr. (Prof.) Kirit Premjibhai Solanki, BJP member from Gujarat says.
Hanuman Beniwal, RLP member from Rajasthan speaks about 'Corona warriors' sacrificing their lives, thanks their service to the country. "The farmers that made BJP win the elections, were forgotten by the leading party. The country knows the injustice done to the farmers. When Rahul Gandhi was giving his speech in the Parliament, he mentioned about how Congress schemes helped farmers in Rajasthan, but BJP couldn't implement any scheme for the farmers."
Motion of Thanks on the President's address continues.
Members present bills for introduction.
Dr. (Prof.) Kirit Premjibhai Solanki, BJP member from Gujarat says that India will always be indebted to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Discussion on motion of thanks on the President's address begins in the lower house.
Minister Law and Justice Kiren Rijiju clarifies that Army has clarified regarding the territory and all the junctions that are in question.
Mr. Chowdhury says: "China has started encroaching our Indian territories and have begun buildings in India, Pentagon says."
Mr. Rijiju asks: "Why do you question Indian sources? Our Indian sources don't say so."
Mr. Chowdhury says: "China has been trying to break India. We need a strong form to stabilise internally. We need an independent judiciary."
"Let us take a look at the rising prices. Petrol, diesel, LPG cylinders, capsicum, toor dal, urad dal, gram dal, have all seen rising prices. The poor are getting poor, the youth are facing various issues."
He lists various issues that 'plague' the nation.
"India recorded 77 rapes per day in 2020, a reduction from the previous year. In 2020, there was 9.4% increase in crime against members of scheduled caste and 9.3% increase in crime against members of scheduled tribe. Hate crimes against religious minorities have spiked."
Leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury speaks about Netaji hologram being switched off at India Gate on Feb 3, 2022.
"We want everyone to learn from our history. With better thoughts and deeds, we need to march ahead. Modiji's sychophants keep chanting 'Modi, Modi' but instead, if they chanted 'Ram, Ram, Ram' then Lord Ram will grace his presence. They have started the Hindutva movement. This country belongs to all of us. Let us save it."
"Some people even worship Godse. In today's India, crimes are happening."
Mr. Chowdhury lists the number of times Prime Minister Narendra Modi has spoken in the Parliament. "During the year of the 75th year of India's Independence, there is too much preoccupation with rights and too little emphasis on duties that weaken India," he adds.
"We need to constitute India into a sovereign, socialist, secular democratic Republic. We the people of India having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a sovereign, secular country and to ensure all it's citizens justice, liberty, equality, fraternity. Some people believe Hindus are in danger. Some believe Muslims are in danger, but in reality, India is in danger."
"If you feel that India is weakening, then we all will help in securing India. Don't we have the right to know what China has done to Indian territory? They are denying the access of Indian Army on 900 sq.km. of India. 18 friction points still exist. These junctions can directly influence Indian movement on roads."
Members express regret over "what happened yesterday". All the parties say they will follow procedure as they underline the importance of maintaining the decorum of the House.
Asaduddin Owaisi rejects 'Z' category security in LS
"Treat me like 'A' class citizen, don't give me 'Z' class security ," AIMIM MP Asaduddin Owaisi said in the Lok Sabha. After Rahul Gandhi, Owaisi too says "there are two Indias but it is not divided in wealth. One India is of love and the other is of hate," he says. "Who is radicalising the youth," he asks talking about the alleged incidence of attack on him. "Why are they not being charged with UAPA," Mr. Owaisi further asks.
Question Hour ends in LS
MPs discuss 'Chip Based e-passports' as Zero Hour continues
M.K. Raghavan raises concerns over the e-Passport. The Congress MP from Kozhikode asks "what measures have been taken to ensure data security of Indian citizens who are going to be issued e-Passports and whether it will be a violation of individual's right to privacy?"
S. Jaishankar responds saying e-Passports are being brought to both make travel easier and ensure data security. The External Affairs Minister says that the passport will be verified at several stages. We're testing it to ensure it is secured, he says. Because it will be on paper and in the chip, the data will be much more protected than in other circumstances, he says.
Mr. Raghavan asks "whether chip based e-passport will reduce the time taken to issue Indian passports when compared to present system and would strengthen the Indian passport when compared to passports issued by other nations?"
Mr. Jaishankar responds saying "the entire world is moving with the chip passport, we have to move too." Within six months, we will be issuing the passports, the External Affairs Minister says, adding, "we will work towards making the time taken to issue the passport similar to what it is right now."
Shashi Tharoor raises concerns of security. "Are we exposing our citizens to greater danger," the Congress MP asks. "What kind of measures can be taken to ensure that the chip is not copied before we introduce the document that puts our own citizens in danger." he asks.
We're very cognizant of the skimming vulnerability, S. Jaishankar responds. "Until we are sure that the skimming dangers are adequately addressed, naturally we will not be going forward," he says, adding, but we're very confident that will not be the case. We're very cognizant of that."
Dayanidhi Maran says when we travel to other countries, we're treated like third-class citizen. Even at our own airports, we're made to wait in lines. "Whether southern States be ignored," the DMK MP asks.
S. Jaishankar responds saying that "the question of ignoring southern States is uncalled for". He urges the DMK MP to refrain from making such statements.
MPs discuss 'Coastal Economic Zone' as Zero Hour continues
Congress MP Hibi Iden says that the government had promised developing five harbours, including one in Kochi. What is the status of Kochi harbour, he asks.
Sarbananda Sonowal, Minister of Port, Shipping and Waterways, says over ₹300 crore have been allocated for the Kochi harbour. He says the project is under development.
DMK MP Kanimozhi Karunanidhi asks the Minister on the status of transshipment hub. The Minister responds saying several areas under survey. He adds that the government is aggressively working towards it.
"The vacancies are not being filled up," says TMC MP Kalyan Banerjee . "No tribunal is functional," he alleges. He asks the Law Minister to "kindly fill up the vacancies".
Kiren Rijiju says "since the time I took over the Ministry, the appointments have been the highest in last several decades." "But there is a process and during the process it may take some time," the Law Minister reponds.
Question Hour in Lok Sabha
MPs discuss the 'National Litigation Policy'. BJP MP Sunil Kumar Singh asks the Law Minister on steps taken to reduce pendencies in the courts. The BJP MP also asks about the steps taken to fill up vacancies in the judiciary. Law Minister Kiren Rijiju responds saying Tribunals have been created to reduce pendency in courts while steps are also being taken to fill up vacancies.
A. Raja suggests bringing in a comprehensive Bill and the Law Minister agrees.
Rajya Sabha adjourned
Rajya Sabha is adjourned and it is set to resume on February 7, 2022 at 10.00 a.m.
On Population Regulation
Ami Yagnik (Congress): when we should be talking about human development and human rights, a bill is moved on population regulation. What will happen if people start going for sex selection. It is a misplaced bill, should not be entertained.
Vikas Mahatme (BJP): Sex selection will be encouraged, do not criminalise being a third child, will have ill impact on the child, though I support the bill.
Abdul Wahab (IUML): China is giving incentives to have more children.
L. Hanumanthaiah (Congress): This kind of propaganda should stop, the myth should be broken that a particular community is responsible for population increase.
Fauzia Khan (NCP): To systematically alter the social fabric of India. The biggest victim of this bill would be women, irrespective of religion.
Manoj Jha (RJD): In 2020, government of India said in the Supreme Court that coercion is not desirable. If you cant write history, change it. Demography is a serious business, should be left to them, not politicians. It will lead to female infanticide. Women would bear the brunt of two child norm, the use of condoms fell down. In West Bengal, TFR is 1.1 % because of decline in neonatal deaths. In next few years, another government will come with a huge majority and will try to exploit a low hanging fruit like this, but those fruits are mostly poisonous.
Rakesh Sinha (BJP nominated) says, "will America and Saudi Arabia give you higher positions, a country cannot survive on foreign remittances, people are being misled in the name of demographic dividend. Many countries need cheap labour, from Pakistan, Bangladeh and India, so they try to mislead and drive the discourse about demographic dividend. They talk about replacement level.
As per Total Fertility Rate, in 174 districts the national average is maintained, in 72 districts the TFR is 4. People who attack us in the name of saffron demography do not want the truth to come out. Among 11 countries; France, Norway, Poland, etc. that are part of OECD, the percentage of unmarried mothers is more than 50 %, in England, more than two lakh children were born to unmarried mothers against 3 lakh to married mothers, I was looking for such data in India, ran Google searches but couldnt find that data. In Bihar, marital fertility rate is more than 6 %, India rate is 4.9%, Andhra 3.4 %, Kerala 5.1 %, Tamil Nadu 3.7%, Telangana 3.6%. Average is always delusionary. A flyover will have to endure the weight of 12 persons, even though the average will come to 6 if I have 11 children and for example Manoj Jha ji has one child. Ecological footprint and bio capacity is decreasing, we are eating the resources meant for the posterity, this is not or right. There is a provision in this bill, after this law is made then it will not be implemented for 18 months, awareness should be made among people during that period."
Bill on Population Regulation
Rakesh Sinha (BJP) moves Private Members Bill on Population Regulation. As many as 40 bills on this subject have already been introduced.
Amar Patnaik moves a Private Members Bill to amend the preamble to the Constitution to insert the word ‘ahimsa’
Deputy Chairman Harivansh says in the last session member Manoj Jha had opposed the introduction of a private members bill by K.J. Alphons (BJP) to amend the preamble to the constitution. The introduction of the bill was deferred on the request of the Parliamentary Affairs Minister. The Chair had clarified that the decision is to be taken by the House and not the Chair. There are number of rulings given by Chair in this House giving the same ruling. Chair has never taken the responsibility of declaring the bill to be ultra vires of the Constitution or not. The question of ultra vires may not be decided by the Chair but left to the House, if the party is aggrieved they can move the court.
Anand Sharma (Congress) says, "Preamble to the Constitution cannot be changed. Would urge the member concerned in larger interest of the country where questions are being raised about the integrity of our commitment to the Indian constitution, this should not be allowed. "
Amar Patnaik (BJD) says, "two words 'socialist and secular' were added to the preamble of the Constitution were added by 42nd amendment, so it can be changed."
Sukhendu Sekhar Ray(TMC), says "that [insertion of socialist and secular] happened long before, before the Kesavananda Bharati judgement in Supreme Court. The court then further ruled that the supremacy of the Constitution cannot be changed, whether court or parliamentary authority, they have to abide by the Constitution. The judgement is still subsisting and therefore the preamble to the constitution cannot be changed."
Deputy Chairman Harivansh says, "Chair cannot decide, it is for the House to decide."
Amar Patnaik (BJD) moves a Private Members' Bill to amend the preamble to the Constitution to insert the word ‘ahimsa.’
Private Members' Business begins in the Rajya Sabha. Bills are being introduced.
Andhra Pradesh in a state of collapse: Kanakamedala Ravindra Kumar, TDP, Andhra Pradesh
Kanakamedala Ravindra Kumar, TDP, Andhra Pradesh speaking on the motion says that Andhra Pradesh is in a State of collapse. He notes that the State government is solely borrowing and the accounts aren't being maintained. He notes that employees are not being paid on time. Accidents due to poor roads are a daily occurance in the State.
"Strong nations are not built by insecure leadership": Priyanka Chaturvedi, Shiv Sena
Priyanka Chaturvedi, Shiv Sena, Maharashtra is speaking on the Motion of Thanks on the President's address, "Strong nations are not built by insecure leadership", she says. She says that Aatmanirbhar Bharat is just a garb and points that there is a new record of imports from China. Ms. Chaturvedi says that the government is silent with respect to women's safety. "State governments aren't getting their GST dues", she says. The government is using its resources to spy on its people instead of spending them towards national security. She notes that many countries have started a probe on the use of Pegasus including Israel and asks why the Parliament is not discussing Pegasus.
'Hero worship' biggest threat to Indian democracy: Manoj Jha, RJD
Manoj Kumar Jha, RJD, Bihar emphasises the need for empathy from governments during the pandemic. He notes that the biggest threat to Indian democracy is from hero worship. Mr. Jha says that the incumbent government is trying to build differences between Indians on the basis of religion and invokes Mahatma Gandhi and his message of peace between religions. He adds that the issue of hunger is plaguing the country. He notes that the government recognise that Ladakh and Kashmir is not just a piece of land and that real people reside.
Government used pandemic to implement its "anti-people policies": K. Somaprasad, CPI (M)
K. Somaprasad, CPI(M), Kerala asks how one can forget the floating dead bodies. He notes that the government has failed to handle the pandemic. He notes that the government has not provided any security, incentives and insurances to frontline workers. He adds that the government used the pandemic to implement its "anti-people policies". He also brings the issue of unemloyment to the notice of the House and says that disinvestment of PSUs will not create new jobs. He says there are about 12.3 lakh vacancies in government jobs. "70% of STs and 50% of SCs are landless, land reforms is the need of the hour, says Mr. Somaprasad.
Discussion on Motion of Thanks on the President's Address begins
Dr. L. Hanumanthaiah is in the chair. Prasanna Acharya, BJD, Odisha appreciates the government's nationalistic approach and notes that many people believe that had Netaji been alive after independence, the country would have been shaped different. He notes that the government has rightly taken the decision to start the Republic Day celebrations from Netaji's birthday.
He also goes on to appreciate the government's decision to celebrate Veer Bal Diwas. He continues that a memorial should be constructed to commemorate "Veer Bals" of this country. Mr. Acharya notes that the farmers' income has not been doubled. He states NCRB data and notes that an increase of 6% has been noted with respect to farmer suicides this year. He requests the government give special status to Odisha. He also notes that the government's power to recall any IAS/IPS officer at any time is harmful to the federalism of the country.
Question Hour comes to an end
Question Hour comes to an end in Rajya Sabha. Papers are being laid on the table.
Questions concerning setting up new industries in Rajasthan and objectives of TRAI are being entertained in the House.
Minister of Electronics and IT on 'Bulli Bai' and 'Sulli Deals'
To a question raised by BJP MP Sushil Modi on action taken against the Bulli Bai creators and subsequent questions, IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said, "If the house has consensus we are willing to provide even stricter social media rules. At this point we are working within the framework of the Constitution. But yes, going forward we need to make the social media more accountable."
Mr. Vaishnaw notes that "protecting women" is important to their government. He says that the investigation was initiated as soon as the issue was brought to notice of the government. He goes on to say that social media has to be made accountable to make them safe spaces.
Guidelines for social media platforms
Ashwini Vaishaw, Minister of Electronics and Information Technology notes that there are five significant social media intermediaries as mandated by the government. All significant social media intermediaries are obliged to publish their monthly compliance reports.
Legal guarantee of MSP
Kailash Choudhary, MoS Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare in a response to a question regarding the committee being set up to look into the legal guarantee of MSP notes that details concerning the committee will be divulged once the government gets permission from the Election Commission to set up a committee as Model Code of Conduct is in place in many States across the country in lieu of the 2022 Assembly Elections.
Narendra Singh Tomar, Minister of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare says, "as Prime Minister had announced we are committed on the issue of MSP. We were to form a Committee for fixing the MSP, but schedule for assembly elections were announced. We wrote to Election Commission seeking their permission, the EC wrote back saying that the Ministry should wait for the elections before setting up the Committee."
Question Hour begins
Question Hour begins in Rajya Sabha. Questions concerning construction of over bridges are being entertained in the House.
DMK MPs and opposition walk out in protest.
Rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits
Priyanka Chaturvedi, Shiv Sena, Maharashtra, notes that only 15% of the rehabilitation work to aid Kashmiri Pandits has been completed. She urges the government through the Chairman to expedite the construction of transit accommodation units.
Manoj Jha, RJD, Bihar says States and centre will have to work together to National Employment Policy. "Across the party lines we have to work together. It is unfortunate that the even in the elections unemployment does not seem to be an issue. We cannot ignore it any longer, we are sitting at the vortex of a volcano threatening to blow up any time now", he notes.
"Include Khasi and Garo in the eighth schedule"
Wanweiroy Kharlukhi notes that Meghalaya is a State of fifty years without a recognised language. He requests that the government include Khasi and Garo in the eighth schedule of the Constitution.
DMK MPs protest against Tamil Nadu Governor
Zero Hour begins in Rajya Sabha. DMK MPs protest against Tamil Nadu Governor for returning the bill passed by the State assembly exempting the State's students from NEET. Other opposition MPs also join in the protest. Chairman is asking the MPs to bring up the issue during the Motion of Thanks to the President's address. Tiruchi Siva, DMK MP says that the Governor is insulting the State assembly. DMK MPs are in the well of the House shouting slogans.
Leader of Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge objects to ministers absence with MoS Parliamentary Affairs Minister lays paper for host of ministries. "The concerned minister should come and place the papers. What other work do they have during the Parliament".
RS Chairman Venkaiah Naidu: I have allowed this only because of COVID pandemic. COVID is not in our hands, otherwise I would not have excused COVID too
Rajya Sabha proceedings begin
Chairman Venkaiah Naidu starts the proceedings for the day. Papers are being laid on the Table of the House.
List of Business in Rajya Sabha (10.00 a.m.)
1. Motion of Thanks on the President's address.
2. Private Members' Legislative Business.
List of Business in Lok Sabha (4.00 p.m.)
1. Motion of Thanks on the President's address.
2. Private Members’ Legislative Business.
High taxes hurting toursim sector: Parliamentary Panel
Noting that high tax rates are hurting inbound tourism to India, a Parliamentary Committee has recommended that the tax regime for the travel and tourism sector should be reviewed to make India an attractive travel destination.
India’s total share in International Tourist Arrivals (ITA) remains a modest 1.24%, which is certainly below its huge potential, the Committee on ‘Promotion of Indian Tourism in Overseas Markets - Role of Overseas Tourist Offices and Indian Embassies’ stated.
“The Committee observes that one of the major reasons for India’s inbound tourism remaining grossly under-utilised has been the high rates and multiplicity of taxes that deter inbound tourism and have led to tourist packages being out priced vis-a-vis those in competing tourist destinations of other countries,” it said.
Ultraviolet tech to mitigate spread of virus in Parliament
Radiation technology to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus has been installed in the Parliament building, Union Minister for Science and Technology Jitendra Singh told the Lok Sabha on Thursday. However, the Minister urged members to continue following COVID appropriate behaviour.
The Minister said the Ultraviolet-C (UV-C) technology, developed by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), has been installed in Lok Sabha and Central Hall chambers to mitigate the airborne transmission of the coronavirus.
Speaking soon after the Question Hour, Mr. Singh thanked Speaker Om Birla for granting permission for the technology.
Day 4 recap
The Members of Parliament participated in Motion of Thanks to the President's address.
The Question Hour in the Upper House entertained questions pertaining to Indian workers in Gulf countries, number of women judges in the country, status of Marathi as a classical language, and the MediaOne issue.
The Lower House entertained questions pertaining to fuel prices, water supply to households. The Pegasus spyware , special status for Bihar and protests over unemployment were among the key issues that figured in the Lok Sabha on Thursday during the debate on Motion of Thanks to the President’s Address
There was furore in the Lower House when the members of the DMK and the Congress walked out of the Lok Sabha, demanding a recall of Tamil Nadu Governor R.N. Ravi, taking exception to his decision to return the NEET Exemption Bill.