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इंडियन आवाज़     04 Mar 2021 08:07:52      انڈین آواز

Rajya Sabha proceedings at a glance- 10 February

The Rajya Sabha has taken up discussion on the Union Budget 2021-22 today. Participating in the discussion, Sushil Kumar Modi of the BJP said the economists have hailed the budget as a reformist budget.

He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ensured that a timely lockdown was enforced in the country to prevent loss of lives due to COVID-19. He said it was a budget dedicated to welfare of the poor and boost reforms.

Earlier, initiating the discussion, Kapil Sibal of  the Congress questioned whether the country was moving towards self reliance as the Finance Minister had claimed. S R Balasubramaniyan of the AIADMK asked the government to reconsider the agriculture Cess on fuel. Amar Patnaik of the BJD, Anthiyur P Selvarasu of the DMK, K R Suresh Reddy of the TRS and Subhash Chandra Bose Pilli of YSRCP also participated in the discussion, which remained inconclusive.

Later, the House adopted the Major Port Authority Bill, 2020 in a division of voting. It seeks to provide autonomy to India’s 12 major ports and improve their efficiency and competitiveness besides creation of a Board for each major port. Moving the Bill for consideration, Minister for Shipping Mansukh Mandaviya said that this Bill has been brought to make important changes in the ease of doing business in the port sector, and to encourage healthy competition between major ports and private ports. 

Initiating discussion on the Bill, Shaktisinh Gohil of Congress said it was an attempt by the government to privatise the ports. Several members including Suresh Prabhu of BJP, Sukhendu Sekhar Ray of the Trinamool Congress, Subhash Chandra Singh of Biju Janata Dal, Prof. Ram Gopal Yadav of Samajwadi Party, P. Wilson of DMK, Elamaram Kareem of CPI, Banda Prakash of the TRS, Prof. Manoj Kumar Jha of RJD, Dr. Fauzia Khan of NCP, K Ravindra Kumar of Telugu Desam Party, Anil Desai of Shiv Sena, Binoy Viswam of CPI, Narain Dass Gupta of Aam Aadmi Party, Ramji of BSP, Thambidurai of AIADMK, Jugalsinh Lokhandwala of BJP, Ramchandra Prasad of JD-U and G K Vasan of TMC-M participated in the discussion.

Replying to a discussion on the Bill, Minister for Shipping Mansukh Mandaviya said that the Bill was not aimed at putting the ports in private hands. He said the government has included provisions in the bill to ensure greater autonomy to the ports. After the reply, the Minister moved the Bill for passage. However, members of the opposition demanded a division. 84 Members voted in favour of the Bill while 44 members voted against it.

Members raised several issues during the Zero Hour. Vinay Sahasrabuddhe of BJP raised the issue of local consulting agencies losing out on business due to existing norms. He said the government should adopt a policy wherein Indian consulting firms are given importance. N R Elango of DMK expressed concern on dilution of reservation in educational institutions in Tamil Nadu. Subhash Chandra Bose Pilli of YSRCP raised the issue of Pending payment to Andhra Pradesh Civil Services Corporation. 

Shaktisinh Gohil of the Congress, raised the issue of Gujarat fishermen lodged in Pakistan jails. Prasanna Acharya of BJD said that a law must be framed for orphan children to save them from exploitation. Anil Baluni of BJP said the Centre should devise a mechanism to study glacier burst in light of the recent accident in Uttarakhand. Jyotiraditya Scindia of BJP said States should be asked to furnish data of Child marriages. He said that education of the girl child was impacted due to COVID-19.

During the Question Hour, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, responding to a question about opening up air routes to over 80 per cent, said the decision to raise the frequency of commercial flights beyond 80 per cent depends on the behaviour of the virus and the commercial decisions are to be taken by the air carriers.

In reply to a question, Labour Minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar said that a package of Rs 27 lakh crore has been given under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat to help generate employment in the rural sector. He said, there are 40 crore unorganised labour and 10 crore organised labour in the country.

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