Sunday, December 9, 2007

Parliament acts as an agitational body says Mr. Imtiaz Ahmed

In this year Lok Sabha functrioned for 66 days, the lowest in the new millennium barring the year 2004. A study conducted by PRS Legislaltive Research, and independent and not-for profit group, has revealed that parliament's total working hours in 2007 were nearly 40% less than in 2006. In this year, parliament introduced 56 bills and passed 46. Last year was much better, 66 introduced and 65 passed. Between 2000 and 2006 (barring 2004), on an average 75 Bills were introduced and 65 passed.
Political scientist Imtiaz Ahmed said such a development indicated a lack of consensus among political parties and the government's unwillingness to face parliament. "It also means that parlaiemtn now acts primarily as an agitational body rather than as a constitutional and legilative authority." he added.
In 2007, parliament fell short by 16 days from its original target for the year. The budget session wsas held for 32 days despite the original plan being for 42 days. Similarly, the monsoon session was planned for 23 days but held for only 16, The winter session,m though, went according to schedule.
Ths Lok shabha works for six hours and Rajya Sabha five hours a day. In 2007, the Lok sabha functioned for an average 4.3 hrs and Rajya Sabha for an average 3.3 hours each day. In comparison, the 2006 Lok Sabha had functioned an average 5. 7 hrs and the Rajya Sabha 4.9 hrs. This year, the Lok Sabha functioned for 280 hrs and the Rajya Sabha for 217 hrs. Compared to last year, it is 36% less for the Lower House and 42 % for the upper house.
Interestingly, while young MPs were way of participating in parliamentary debats, the older guards were m uch molre active in democratic discussion in the country's highest publicforum. According to the study, the maximum participatin in debats came from the 56-70 age group of MPs.