For the group of parliamentarians from Bhutan it was a tour to learn how democracy works in India. What they saw was Indian MPs stalling parliamentary democracy.
Announcing their presence in the gallery on Monday, Rajya Sabha chairman Hamid Ansari said,“We hope that during their stay here they would be able to see and learn more about our parliamentary system."
With the session facing a washout due to disruptions, both ruling and opposition MPs saw the irony in the word "learn" and burst out laughing. The Bhutanese parliamentarians too smiled.
Jigme Zangpo, speaker of the Bhutan’s National assembly, later told Hindustan Times, “We could only see a few minutes of proceedings as the Houses got adjourned.”
Parliamentary affairs minister Venkaiah Naidu told the delegation at a meeting that, “one can learn the best practices followed in their respective systems” through such visits.
With nothing much to speak about the current session, Naidu spoke to the delegates about the previous session where both Houses worked for more than their scheduled hours.
The delegation also met Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and interacted with other senior parliamentarians.
Bhutan made the transition from absolute monarchy to constitutional monarchy and held its first general election in 2008.