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Winter session ends: Govt, Oppn take demonetisation row outside Parliament

After a brief spate of disruptions over demonetisation, the Lok Sabha functioned smoothly to facilitate passage of theRights of Persons with Disabilities Bill while the Rajya Sabha was adjourned sine die on the last day of winter session on Friday.

Parliament winter session 2016 Updated: Dec 16, 2016 14:44 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Parliament,PM Modi,Demonetisation
A general view of the Lok Sabha on last day of winter session, on Friday.(Picture courtesy: Lok Sabha TV)

After a brief spate of disruptions over demonetisation, the Lok Sabha functioned smoothly to facilitate passage of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill while the Rajya Sabha was adjourned sine die on the last day of winter session on Friday.

Parliament had witnessed disruptions through the month-long winter session as the Opposition-government deadlock over demonetisation refused to abate.

Most of the action, however, spilled outside Parliament on Friday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi slammed the Congress and Left parties for opposing demonetisation and said that “for Congress, the party is above the nation”. The Opposition counter attacked by submitting a memorandum to the PM, demanding loan waivers for debt-ridden farmers. It also blamed the government for flouting democratic values and blocking the debate on note ban in Parliament.

The Centre’s claim that note ban has hit black money holders in the country is widely contested by the Opposition, who say the government’s move to scrap Rs 500/1000 notes has hit poor the hardest.

Live updates:

2:15pm: After a sombre statement on disruptions, LS Speaker Sumitra Mahajan ends winter session after all parties buried acrimony to provide a smooth passage to a bill that empowers people with disabilities.

2:10pm: The motion is adopted. The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2016 is passed in Lok Sabha.

1:55pm: Lok Sabha votes on amendments in the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill.

1:10pm: Members of the Opposition delegation that visited the President unanimously blame the Centre for repeated disruptions during the winter session, in a press conference on Friday.

Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge says they parties wanted a debate in Parliament on demonetisation but the government flouted all democratic values and blocked it

“We even agreed that discussion may happen without applying the rule. Ultimately, we stand with the poorest of the poor, with the common man of the country,”adds TMC’s Sudip Bandyopadhyay after taking the mantle.

12:55pm: While all parties agree to facilitate passage of the Persons with Disabilities Bill, SP, BSP decide to stay away from joint Opposition delegation that will be meeting the President to discuss demonetisation and Parliament logjam.

12:35pm: Lawmaker Dr Manoj Rajoria requests the government to alter the word ‘disabilities’ to ‘special abilities’ in the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, which was passed in Rajya Sabha earlier this month.

The bill aims to secure and enhance the rights and entitlements of disabled persons, and stipulating up to two-year jail term and a maximum fine of Rs 5 lakh for discrimination. The bill replaces the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995.

12:25pm: The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2016, has been taken for consideration in the Lower House. In a rare show of support, INC whip in Lok Sabha KC Venugopal says the entire Opposition is in agreement with the government to pass this bill.

12:20pm: Opposition leaders arrive at Rashtrapati Bhavan to meet President Pranab Mukherjee for discussing demonetisation and its impact on lower economic class.

12:15pm: TV channels report that opposition parties Bahujan Samajwadi Party and SP are miffed with Rahul for holding a meeting with the Prime Minister.

12pm: Lok Sabha convenes after a brief adjournment. Sumitra Mahajan says she has disallowed all adjournment motions. Papers are laid on the table.

11:50am: “We asked the Prime Minister to waive farmers’ loans at the earliest... The PM agreed that the farmers’ condition was grave but he did not talk about loan waivers”: Rahul Gandhi gives details about his meeting with Modi.

11:30am: Trinamool Congress leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay said the responsibility to run Parliament belongs to the ruling party and the government’s actions in the last three days were not “desirable”.

11:15am: Rajya Sabha chairman and vice-president Hamid Ansari reads out his closing statement before adjourning the Upper House sine die.

“I had fervently hoped that I would not have to repeat what I said at the conclusion of the 221st session in Dec 2013. My hope stands belied.”

“Regular and continuous disruptions signify this session... The rules about displaying placards and shouting slogans were ignored by all sections of the House. Peace prevailed only when obituaries were read out.”

“The Rajya Sabha is adjourned sine die.”

11:10am: We met the PM over problems faced by farmers, loans, suicides and the MSP issue. The Prime Minister has promised to look into the matter, Capt Amarinder Singh tells ANI.

Opposition leaders meeting PM Modi, in New Delhi. ( Picture courtesy: PMO )

11:05am: Speaker Sumitra Mahajan adjourns Lok Sabha till noon amid uproar over note ban.

11am: Parliamentary proceedings begin amid protests against demonetisation in the Lok Sabha.Papers are being laid out in the Rajya Sabha with relative ease.

10:55am: A delegation of Congress MPs led by party vice-president Rahul Gandhi submits a memorandum to the Prime Minister at his Parliament House office, demanding loan waivers for debt-ridden UP farmers.

10:45am: Prime Minister Narendra Modi slams Opposition for protesting against note ban.

“We have to move ahead with those supporting us in our fight against black money... Today, when we have started a movement to tackle black money, the Opposition is creating hurdles. For the Congress, the party interest is above the nation.”

“Earlier, the Opposition would join hands against the government over scams like 2G, Coalgate but now the Opposition is united against the govt’s steps to curb black money and corruption,” the PM said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Rajnath Singh and Amit Shah at the BJP meet on Friday. ( Arun Sharma/HT Photo )

10:15am: As the BJP holds its party meeting, opposition leaders meet simultaneously in Parliament.

9:55am: BJP parliamentary meet begins, reports ANI.

Senior party leaders Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Arun Jaitley and Venkaiah Naidu are present at the meeting.  

9:35am: Prime Minister Modi arrives for the BJP parliamentary meet.

(With input from agencies)

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First Published: Dec 16, 2016 09:42 IST