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Winter session ends, Centre says Congress stalled bill triple talaq

January 05, 2018 16:35 IST

The Lok Sabha was on Friday adjourned sine die, bringing to an end the short winter session during which the House passed 12 bills, including the triple talaq legislation that seeks to criminalise instant divorce in the Muslim community.

Announcing the adjournment, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said the session, which commenced on December 15, had 13 sittings spread over 61 hours and 48 minutes.

The House lost about 15 hours due to disruptions and adjournments.


Important bills passed during the session included the central road fund (amendment) bill, the requisitioning and acquisition of immovable property bill, the national capital territory of Delhi laws (special provisions) second (amendment) bill and the goods and services tax (compensation to states) amendment bill.

A bill to hike the salary of high court and Supreme Court judges was also passed.

The Speaker said 16 bills were introduced by the government in the session.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was present in the House as she announced its adjournment after briefing members on the proceedings during the winter session.

The discussion on supplementary demands for grants, second and third batch for 2017-18, lasted for more than six hours before the demands were voted and the related appropriation bills passed, she said.

"In this session, while we lost over 14 hours and 51 minutes of time due to interruptions followed by forced adjournments, the House also sat late for 8 hours and 10 minutes to discuss various important issues," she said.

During the session, 280 starred questions were listed, of which 45 questions were answered orally.

Written replies to the remaining starred questions along with 3,220 unstarred questions were tabled, she said.

About 198 matters of urgent public importance were raised by the members and by sitting late in the evening, while the members also raised 226 matters under rule 377, she said.

Standing committees presented 41 Reports to the House.

The Lok Sabha held a short duration discussion under rule 193 regarding natural calamities in various part of the country, with special reference to cyclone Ockhi in South India.

The discussion was concluded with the reply by Union home minister, she said.

During the session, as many as 2,255 papers were tabled by the ministers concerned, she said, adding that 98 Private Members' bills on different subjects were also introduced.

The Rajya Sabha was adjourned sine die with Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu urging members to seriously introspect on their conduct in the House which lost almost 34 hours due to frequent disruptions.

The Rajya Sabha, which had 13 sittings during the winter session that started on December 15, saw the passage of nine government bills.

Ahead of adjourning the House sine die at 1 pm in the presence of Modi, Naidu said the session had its highs and lows, but lamented that it ended up losing some degree of esteem on account of disruptions.

"It is unfortunate that despite discharging its responsibilities to a great extent, the august House ends up losing some degree of the esteem of the people on account of disruptions and substantial loss of functional time.

"Intense and passionate submissions and debates are the order of democracy, but disruptions are certainly not. I urge upon members to seriously introspect in this regard," he said.

Naidu also said it was ‘an opportunity for all of us to review, recall and introspect’ about how the proceedings have been conducted in the House.

This, he said, was the first full session after he took over as the Chairman and it could have been better than what it proved.

Naidu said though Parliament was a political institution, it ‘cannot be an extension of politics in its typical sense which is marked by deep divisions and acrimony’.

Parliament is an important institution for furthering the shared socio-economic goals of the nation, critical to fulfilling the aspirations of citizens, he said.

"The legislatures of our country including the apex Parliament need to quickly evolve the way we conduct our proceedings so as to meet the needs of our evolving nation," he said.

Naidu said 19 private members’ bills were introduced and one was discussed at length.

During the five days when Question Hour was taken up, he said as many as 46 starred questions were orally answered and 51 members made Zero Hour submissions and another 28 made special mentions.

The House functioned a total of 41 hours.

The productivity of the Lok Sabha was 91.58 per cent while that of Rajya Sabha was 56.29 per cent in the winter session, Union Minister Ananth Kumar said.

"In a way this session was landmark... 13 bills were passed in the Lok Sabha and nine in the Rajya Sabha during the 13 working days of the Winter Session," the parliamentary affairs minister told reporters.

During the session, 17 bills were introduced and 12 bills were passed by both the Houses.

"I am grateful to all the parties and all members of both the houses for making this session fruitful," Kumar said.

Replying to a question on the bill criminalising instant triple talaq which could not be passed by Rajya Sabha in the session, Kumar blamed the Congress for stalling the crucial legislation and alleged that the opposition came up with a new excuse every day to defer its passage.

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