Suspension for protests in Well of Houses under consideration
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla is trying to evolve a consensus among state assemblies and Parliament on this issue, which would entail changes in legislative rules and regulations.Updated: Jan 18, 2020 00:01 IST
Stricker rules for how lawmakers will conduct themselves in Parliament and state assemblies, including an automatic suspension for protesting in the Well of the House, is under the consideration of presiding officers of India’s legislative bodies in a bid to tackle growing disruptions.
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla is trying to evolve a consensus among state assemblies and Parliament on this issue, which would entail changes in legislative rules and regulations. Such a radical measure, however, will also require political consensus among big parties and important regional outfits.
According to people familiar with the matter, Birla has indicated that he might take a cue from the Chhattisgarh assembly, which already has such rules in place.
“Some assemblies have good rules. It should be an effort to ensure that all assemblies and Parliament have same rules. We also have to think on how to conduct debate and discussion with decency,” Birla said at the end of the seventh Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) India Chapter meeting in Lucknow on Friday.
“In assembly and Parliament, debate should be without disruptions. For taking a decision on all the issue, government and the opposition parties have to be taken into confidence,” he added.
35 presiding officers attended the meeting and representatives from Canada and Malaysia.
Disruptions have been a problem in both Houses of Parliament for years, and there have been instances of complete the washout of an entire session due to face-off between the government and the Opposition --for instance winter sessions of 2010 and 2016. For the first time, there are talks about suspension rules in both parliament and assembly.
While a preliminary debate has started on the possible measures to control disruptions, a concrete set of proposals are expected to be framed in the next few months. A panel have been formed to examine how to end disruptions -- including other panels that will look into issues such as tenth schedule and greater coordination between parliament and assembly.
While Birla is keen to establish uniform rules in all legislative bodies, he also admitted that people are worried about the falling standard of debates and discussion during legislative debates.
As a measure to address this, he suggested in the meeting in Lucknow that state assemblies, (like Parliament) should give awards to the best lawmakers to encourage others to actively participate in proceedings. He also announced training modules for all elected bodies, starting from gram panchayats.