The Monsoon Session of Parliament is set to begin on July 21, but it will be a truncated three-week affair.
The Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs (CCPA) is learnt to have recommended the dates for the monsoon session during which the government is expected to 'hit rough weather' over the 'Lalitgate' issue.
The monsoon session is generally a four-week affair. The earlier proposal was to commence the session from July 20, a Monday. But as the festival of Eid may fall on July 18 or 19, a decision was taken to start it from July 21. The session is likely to be stormy this time with the government facing mounting criticism from the opposition on the Lalit Modi controversy and land acquisition ordinance issue.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh heads CCPA which also has several senior ministers, including Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu, as its members. Congress has been warning that the upcoming session could be in jeopardy if External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje Scindia were not made to resign on the Lalit Modi row. BJP has, however, rejected the demand.
Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad has said that it would virtually impossible to transact any business if the opposition demands are not met over the Lalit Modi issue. The amendments to the Lokpal and Lokayukta Act, the Railways (Amendment) Bill, the Waterways Bill, the GST Bill, the amendments to the land acquisition bill, Compensatory Afforestation Fund Bill and Benami Transactions (Prohibition) amendment Bill, 2015 are some of the key measures pending in Parliament.
Lok Sabha had 35 sittings during the budget session, the highest in the last five years, while Rajya Sabha held 32 sittings. During the last session, Lok Sabha lost six hours and 54 minutes due to interruptions but made up for the lost time by giving up lunch breaks and working beyond scheduled time for42 hours and 41 minutes.
Rajya Sabha lost 18 hours and 28 minutes but made up for 20 hours. The government is keen on a minimum of 100 sittings of Parliament each year as recommended by the last Conference of Chief Whips and Floor Leaders of Legislatures held in October 2014.