Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu writes to party chiefs on absenteeism

Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu. File

Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu. File   | Photo Credit: PTI


‘Mechanism should be instituted for monitoring of attendance’

After reprimanding members for bunking Standing Committee meetings and Ministers for skipping the House without prior information on Thursday and Friday, respectively, Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu on Monday wrote to leaders of the 29 political parties in the House, urging them to ensure regular attendance of their members in the meetings.

Mr. Naidu said in his letter that the absence of members denied their parties their views in reports of committees.

He suggested that a mechanism be instituted for regular monitoring of members’ attendance and counselling. Last week, he held a meeting with the Chairmen of 8 DRSCs (Departmentally-related Standing Committees) and 12 Standing Committees of the Rajya Sabha.

The Standing Committees were introduced in 1993 as mini-Parliament where each and every legislation can be closely studied. “If the Members of Parliament belonging to a party absent themselves from the meetings of the DRSCs, the viewpoint and concerns of respective parties on issues under consideration will not be reflected in the recommendations /reports of DRSCs,” Mr. Naidu wrote.

“Since each Member of DRSC represents 25 Members of Parliament, if one Member does not attend a meeting of the Committee, it amounts to denying the voice of as many Members of Parliament being reflected in the meetings of the Committees,” he wrote

There are a total of 24 DRSCs, mandated with detailed scrutiny of the Bills referred to them and focussed examination of issues/subjects chosen by the Committees for reporting. Each DRSC has 31 MPs, including 10 from the Rajya Sabha and 21 from the Lok Sabha, nominated based on the strength of each political party. As against the total of 24 DRSCs, including 8 of the Rajya Sabha and 16 of the Lok Sabha, only the BJP and the Congress have a combined strength of 386 and 98 respectively, which ensures them a minimum representation of 3 members on each DRSC. Three other parties which are represented by at least one member on each DRSC are: the Trinamool with a combined strength of 35, the DMK 27 and the YSRCP 24.

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 10:57:10 PM |

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