File photo: Rajasthan Assembly Speaker Dr CP Joshi.(Himanshu Vyas/ Hindustan Times)
File photo: Rajasthan Assembly Speaker Dr CP Joshi.(Himanshu Vyas/ Hindustan Times)

Opposition, experts rue lack of question hour in Rajasthan Assembly

The government and the Assembly management said the question and zero hours were disallowed in view of the coronavirus pandemic.  
By Sachin Saini | Edited by Sparshita Saxena | Hindustan Times, Jaipur
UPDATED ON AUG 25, 2020 08:11 AM IST

The Rajasthan Assembly session, which began on August 14, was adjourned sine die on Monday after three sittings but without the question and zero hours. The Opposition legislators were prompt to say that the sole purpose of the session was to prove the government’s majority. Experts said if lawmakers cannot hold the government to account in Assembly, it was was a dangerous trend for democracy.  

The government and the Assembly management said the question and zero hours were disallowed in view of the coronavirus pandemic.  

The Assembly session convened on August 14 when the Ashok Gehlot government moved and won the confidence motion by voice vote. This followed more than a month-long political turmoil arising out of the rebellion by former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot and 18 other Congress MLAs.  

Also read: Did he say it or did he not? Rahul’s remarks on letter writers create flutter

The Assembly was adjourned until August 21 and when it reconvened that day, there was only discussion on Covid-19 situation in the state, no question or zero hour was allowed. The same happened on Monday, during the third sitting of the Assembly when 13 bills were passed in the House but no discussion on them took place even as the Opposition boycotted the business advisory committee’s (BAC) meeting over five bills tabled on Monday itself.

The government tabled eight bills on August 21 and five on Monday; all were passed amid protest by the Opposition. Leader of Opposition Gulab Chand Kataria said they didn’t have enough time to study the new bills. The Opposition also staged a walkout.

BJP MLA Kalicharan Saraf, who is a member of the BAC, said, “Not holding question and zero hour is unjustified. It is happening only because the government has the mandate. We protested in the BAC meeting, too. The government wanted to have this assembly session only for the trust vote and is unconcerned about public issues.”

Two other BJP MLAs echoed the sentiment.  

Pratap Singh Singhvi said it is in the question and zero hour that lawmakers could grill ministers over issues of public interest. “The state is in the grip of locust invasion, parents are protesting over school fee, there’s the issue of unemployment – there was so much that we wanted to discussed but the session became a mere formality,” he said.

Jogeshwar Garg accused the government of misusing its mandate in the BAC. “It called the session for its own requirement,” he added.  

According to the Assembly website, there are around 1,200 questions for the session, including the starred ones. Twenty-five starred questions were listed on Monday.

Assembly Speaker CP Joshi said everyone wanted the session to be longer but the BAC decided against it because of the rising number of Covid-19 cases. “There was no intention to prevent the Opposition from raising questions and seeking a reply from the government but the question and zero hour would have led to the inflow of more people in the Assembly,” he said in the House.

“No state assembly across the country is holding question or zero hour because of this,” he added. The speaker said that in Bihar, a one-day session happened and around 13 bills were passed. Even in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, the speaker will take a call to take question hour or not.  

“The session will be called again once the situation improves and all issues will be discussed,” the Speaker said while addressing the House.  

Chief whip Mahesh Joshi also blamed the pandemic for not holding question and zero hour. “During these, department officials and staff are required to be in the Assembly and we wanted to prevent the flow of more people,” he said.

But political commentator Narayan Bareth said that in the democratic system, questions are most important as they hold the government to account. “There is no democracy if there aren’t questions,” he said. “It’s not about the Congress or the BJP; they both are equal. It’s a dangerous trend of not addressing questions,” he added. 

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
Uttarakhand Police personnel deployed in US Nagar district(HT PHOTO)
Uttarakhand Police personnel deployed in US Nagar district(HT PHOTO)

Uttarakhand police on alert in 4 districts after violence in Delhi tractor rally

PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 04:17 PM IST
  • The police headquarters has asked the US Nagar district police to maintain extra vigil as it is the most affected district in the state by the farmers’ agitation.
Close
Sameer Desai being welcomed into Shiv Sena by Uddhav Thackeray (Photo@ShivSena)
Sameer Desai being welcomed into Shiv Sena by Uddhav Thackeray (Photo@ShivSena)

Sameer Desai quits BJP, joins Shiv Sena

PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 04:15 PM IST
A two-term Congress corporator, Sameer Desai has also been the spokesperson of Mumbai Congress.
Close
The nishan sahib transformed into the symbol of sikh sovereignty and identity.(AP)
The nishan sahib transformed into the symbol of sikh sovereignty and identity.(AP)

All you need to know about Nishan Sahib, the flag hoisted by farmers on Red Fort

By hindustantimes.com | Written by Deepali Sharma, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 27, 2021 04:20 PM IST
Actor Deep Sidhu has been accused of instigating the farmers for the deviation in the route as well as for hoisting the flag.
Close
Heavy security personnel deployed at Red Fort in New Delhi on Wednesday. A group of protestors climbed to the ramparts of the fort and unfurled flags on the 26th of January. (ANI)
Heavy security personnel deployed at Red Fort in New Delhi on Wednesday. A group of protestors climbed to the ramparts of the fort and unfurled flags on the 26th of January. (ANI)

Red Fort breach: Minister Prahlad Patel says report to be sent to MHA

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Arpan Rai
UPDATED ON JAN 27, 2021 04:24 PM IST
A tractor parade on Tuesday descended into anarchy as tens of thousands of protesters broke through barriers, fought with police, overturned vehicles and hoisted a religious flag from the ramparts of the iconic Red Fort.
Close
BJP MP Manoj Tiwari hadchallenged the summons issued to him in a criminal defamation case filed by Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.(Amal KS/HT File PHOTO)
BJP MP Manoj Tiwari hadchallenged the summons issued to him in a criminal defamation case filed by Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.(Amal KS/HT File PHOTO)

Supreme Court stays defamation proceeding against BJP leader Manoj Tiwari

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh
PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 03:48 PM IST
The case pertains to a complaint Sisodia brought against Tiwari and BJP leader Vijender Gupta in which Sisodia said the two leaders have levelled corruption charges against him.
Close
Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) senior leader Abhay Singh Chautala addresses farmers during their protest against the new farm laws, at National Highway 48, near Rajiv Chowk, in Gurugram on Tuesday. (ANI PHOTO)
Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) senior leader Abhay Singh Chautala addresses farmers during their protest against the new farm laws, at National Highway 48, near Rajiv Chowk, in Gurugram on Tuesday. (ANI PHOTO)

INLD legislator Abhay Singh Chautala resigns over farm laws, Speaker accepts

By hindustantimes.com, HT Correspondent, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 27, 2021 04:25 PM IST
The Haryana MLA has staunchly backed farmers in their protest as he also carried out a tractor rally from Punjab's Ambala earlier this month.
Close
BJP spokesperson Azfar Shamshi(Photo@Azfarshamshi)
BJP spokesperson Azfar Shamshi(Photo@Azfarshamshi)

Bihar BJP spokesperson shot at in Munger; 1 arrested

PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 03:40 PM IST
The police said that Azfar Shamshi was fired upon by 2-3 men while he was on way to college from his residence.
Close
Farmers reach Red fort during their tractor rally on Republic Day, in Delhi . (ANI)
Farmers reach Red fort during their tractor rally on Republic Day, in Delhi . (ANI)

‘Dirty conspiracy’: Farmers’ leaders accuse Centre of ‘sabotaging’ peaceful stir

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Karan Manral
UPDATED ON JAN 27, 2021 03:40 PM IST
The Samyukt Kisan Morcha on Wednesday said the government was ‘shaken up’ by their agitation and hence ‘hatched a conspiracy’ with the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee.
Close
Gurnam Singh Charuni. (Facebook)
Gurnam Singh Charuni. (Facebook)

Gurnam Charuni: The firebrand behind the farmers’ protests

By Zia Haq
UPDATED ON JAN 27, 2021 04:19 PM IST
Charuni, the leader of the Haryana unit of Bharatiya Kisan Union, organised one of the first meetings in September in Haryana’s Pipli village to protest against the three laws
Close
A view of Supreme Court. (HT Photo)
A view of Supreme Court. (HT Photo)

Supreme Court refuses protection to makers of web series Tandav

By Abraham Thomas
PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 03:23 PM IST
The bench observed, “Your right to freedom of speech is not absolute. You cannot play the role of a character that hurts the sentiments of a community.”
Close
The UAE registered the Sinopharm vaccine after finding it had a 86% efficacy rate, paving the way for a full public use and allowing for a re-opening of the Gulf nation’s economy.(REUTERS (Representative Image))
The UAE registered the Sinopharm vaccine after finding it had a 86% efficacy rate, paving the way for a full public use and allowing for a re-opening of the Gulf nation’s economy.(REUTERS (Representative Image))

AP dentist falls ill after Covid-19 vaccination; not due to jab, says official

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 02:59 PM IST
P Ratnavali, district medical and health officer (DMHO) of Prakasam, said the dentist Dhana Lakshimi was having infection in urinary tract and liver while taking the vaccine shot on December 23 at the government general hospital here.
Close
Tandav web show stars Saif Ali Khan and Dimple Kapadia in prominent roles.
Tandav web show stars Saif Ali Khan and Dimple Kapadia in prominent roles.

'Freedom of speech not absolute': SC tells makers of web series 'Tandav'

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Amit Chaturvedi
UPDATED ON JAN 27, 2021 03:06 PM IST
The web series is facing criminal cases for hurting religious sentiments and insulting religion punishable under Sections 153A and 295 of Indian Penal Code.
Close
Asked if the farmers' protest has lost its credibility after the violence witnessed in Delhi here, the senior BJP leader said, "Those who are leading the protest should introspect why such an incident happened."(Anshuman Poyrekar/HT photo)
Asked if the farmers' protest has lost its credibility after the violence witnessed in Delhi here, the senior BJP leader said, "Those who are leading the protest should introspect why such an incident happened."(Anshuman Poyrekar/HT photo)

No one should do politics over violence: Fadnavis on R-Day farmers' protest

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 02:52 PM IST
Speaking to PTI, Fadnavis condemned the violence and said farm leaders leading the protest should introspect why such violence took place.
Close
Farmers reach Red fort during their tractor rally on Republic Day, in Delhi . (ANI)
Farmers reach Red fort during their tractor rally on Republic Day, in Delhi . (ANI)

Farmer unions blame KMSC for digressing from route, taking rally to Red Fort

By Anil Sharma
PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 02:20 PM IST
The Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Committee has also been flayed on social media for distancing itself from the decision of the other farmer unions
Close
Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi. (Sonu Mehta/HT PHOTO)
Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi. (Sonu Mehta/HT PHOTO)

BJP MLA blames Sonia Gandhi, Rahul for tractor parade violence, Cong hits back

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 27, 2021 01:40 PM IST
Speaking with reporters on Tuesday night, the BJP MLA said, "The act of violence during tractor parade is condemnable. A case of sedition should be lodged and strict action should be taken against those involved in the act".
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP