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Punjab MLAs asked questions, but were not present for answers in House

As soon as the day’s proceedings began, the speaker started calling out the names of MLAs. The first five questions had to be dropped as the legislators, who had listed them, were not present.

punjab Updated: Mar 27, 2018 19:55 IST
Navneet Sharma
Navneet Sharma
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Punjab MLAs,Punjab news,Punjab assembly
Expressing concern, parliamentary affairs minister Brahm Mohindra later said the question hour is an important feature of democracy.(HT Photo)

The Punjab assembly on Tuesday did not find many takers for the question hour.

The House ran out of questions, as several members who had asked questions were not present when their turn came. The duration of the question hour, which usually runs for an hour from 10am to 11am as the name suggests, got curtailed by more than 10 minutes. Of the 20 members whose questions were listed, eight, including Kulbir Singh Zira, Jai Krishan, Harpartap Singh Ajnala, Davinder Singh Ghubaya, Lakhvir Singh Lakha and Rupinder Kaur Ruby, were not present. Their questions were dropped.

Expressing concern, parliamentary affairs minister Brahm Mohindra later said the question hour is an important feature of democracy. “The members probably did not get to know in time that their questions are listed,” he said, requesting the speaker to devise a mechanism whereby members are informed a day in advance.

Speaker Rana KP said the assembly staff inform the members a day before their questions are listed. “We will still try to ensure they get enough time,” he added. As per practice, MLAs give questions relating to problems of their constituencies and other issues in advance. These questions are then listed for the question hour where the ministers give written replies and the members get a chance to ask supplementary queries to ministers.

As soon as the day’s proceedings began, the speaker started calling out the names of MLAs. The first five questions had to be dropped as the legislators, who had listed them, were not present. A few of them came to the House later, but their questions had been dropped by then.

During the question hour, school education minister Aruna Chaudhary said, of the 182 posts of teachers in primary, high and senior secondary schools located in 10 villages of Nakodar assembly constituency, 121 are vacant. The minister gave the information in response to a question put up by Akali MLA Gurpartap Singh Wadala who said that 80-90% posts of teachers remain filled up in urban schools and there are hardly any teachers in rural schools. He asked the minister if the government will carry out rationalisation of teacher deployment.

Chaudhary said many of these posts fell vacant due to retirements and will be filled soon as the process to recruit 3,582 teachers is underway.

First Published: Mar 27, 2018 19:55 IST