Congress seeks credit for a ‘productive monsoon session’
Among key bills passed in Parliament in the session, Congress supported the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill and the one on giving constitutional status to the National Commission for Backward Classes.Updated: Aug 10, 2018 23:33 IST
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
The Congress on Friday claimed credit for the smooth functioning of Parliament in the Monsoon session, which turned out to be one of the most productive of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s regime.
Among key bills passed in Parliament in the session, the main Opposition party supported the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill and the one on giving constitutional status to the National Commission for Backward Classes.
“Over the last four years, the Congress, as a constructive Opposition, has regularly extended support to legislative business in the interest of the nation, including constitutional amendments including the recent one that gave constitutional status to the backward classes commission. Our mission is to improve legislation and without our cooperation we would be back in the sad days when the BJP was indulging in destructive disruption,” Congress spokesperson Rajeev Gowda said.
During the session, Congress president Rahul Gandhi participated in the debate on the no-confidence motion brought by the Telugu Desam Party over the government’s “failure” to accord special status to Andhra Pradesh.
It was Gandhi’s sharpest attack yet on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, calling him a “bhagidaar (partner) and not chowkidar (watchman)” for “favouring his 10-20 businessmen friends” and reiterated his allegations of corruption in the Rafale deal.
At the end of his speech, Gandhi, in an unprecedented gesture, went up to the treasury benches to give a hug to the PM. Initially Modi looked surprised but later shook hands with Gandhi and patted him on the back.
But one big setback for the Congress was the defeat of its candidate BK Hariprasad in the election to the Rajya Sabha deputy chairperson’s post by NDA nominee Harivansh of the Janata Dal (United). The Congress failed to rope in the Biju Janata Dal and the Telangana Rashtra Samithi, as both the parties extended their support to the NDA.
In the Rajya Sabha, chairman M Venkaiah Naidu congratulated the leader of the Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad for the heightened productivity of the House.
Earlier in the day, the Congress boycotted the breakfast hosted by Naidu in honour of new deputy chairperson Harivansh, in protest against the passage of bills amid din in the Upper House on Thursday.
First Published: Aug 10, 2018 23:33 IST