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Rajya Sabha adjourned sine die after passing only nine bills

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New Delhi: Amid the protest over the issues of a Ram temple in Ayodhya and alleged irregularities in the DDCA, the Rajya Sabha was adjourned sine die on Wednesday after passing only nine bills, even as the government lashed out at the Congress party for not allowing the House to function for political gains.

“The Upper House has passed only nine bills and its productivity was only 46%. It is a great disappointment,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu said, adding, “During the Winter Session, Lok Sabha passed 14 Bills and productivity of the House was about 100.46 per cent.”

Naidu hit out at the Congress party for “not respecting the mandate of the people and creating obstacles for us even though PM Narendra Modi is doing a great job. He has revived the economy. All international agencies are saying that India is the most favoured destination for investments.”

“The Government from day one has been saying that we are ready to discuss any issue, but they did not allow the House to function.”

MoS Finance Jayant Sinha termed it “a very disappointing session” as the government’s expectation was that it would get GST Bill passed.

Earlier, the Rajya Sabha’s proceedings were briefly disrupted twice in the pre-lunch session on Wednesday over the issues of a Ram temple in Ayodhya and alleged irregularities in the DDCA.

Soon after the upper house met for the day, Janata Dal-United member K C Tyagi raised the issue of stones being transported and carved for constructing the proposed Ram temple at Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh.

He said that tension is being created in Ayodhya, where the Babri mosque once stood.

“A similar situation (to what prevailed earlier) is being created in Ayodhya once again. Tension is being created,” Tyagi said.

Members of the Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party and the Congress too supported him.

BSP leader Mayawati accused the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh of trying to derive political mileage by again raking up the Ram temple issue.

“There should not be anything that is in contempt of the Supreme Court. It’s the responsibility of the Uttar Pradesh government to maintain law and order,” she said.

“Stones are being polished since 1990, and the site is around one-and-a-half km away from the disputed site. Second, both the government and the BJP firmly believe the court decision should be respected and we will respect it,” Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said.

“There is no restriction on the carving of stones; it does not mean the Ram temple is being constructed,” he said.

However, members of the Congress and Samajwadi Party trooped near the chairman’s podium and shouted slogans against the government.

Deputy Chairman P J Kurien adjourned the house for 10 minutes.

As the house reassembled at 11.34 a.m., Congress members again trooped near the chairman’s podium to demand the resignation of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley over the Delhi and District Cricket Association issue.

Chairman Hamid Ansari requested the Congress members not to disrupt the proceeding on the last day of the winter session but his request was ignored.

He then adjourned the house till 1.00 p.m.(With inputs from agencies)

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Quota Reservation Bill Moved in Rajya Sabha

The Constitution (124th Amendment) Bill was passed after a division with 323 members voting in its favour and three against in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday

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The Rajya Sabha was adjourned till afternoon following protests by opposition members amidst a demand that the Constitution bill providing for upper castes reservation be sent to a Select Committee for detailed consideration even as the government sought to push ahead with its passage on the last day of the winter session on Wednesday.

With Lok Sabha having passed the Constitution (124th Amendment) bill providing for 10 per cent reservation for the economically weaker sections among the general category in government service and higher educational institutions, Social Justice Minister Thawarchand Gehlot moved it for consideration in the upper House.

CPI member D. Raja, who objected to the consideration of the bill, demanded that it be sent to a Select Committee and the House should first take a decision on it.

Madhusudhan Mistry of Congress said the Bill was not complete and told the government that it cannot have both introduction and voting on the same day. He asked what was the urgency in the passage of the Bill.

Members were also protesting against the “unilateral” extension of the session till Wednesday saying it was done without consulting the opposition. They said the Chair did not announce a day’s extension in the working days of the House nor did it seek the members’ consent.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Vijay Goel said the Congress was raising technical issues to stall the Bill. “If you openly oppose the Bill, it is different. Otherwise, let’s have a discussion on it as it has already been introduced,” he said.

Quota reservation bill moved in Rajya Sabha.

Moving the Bill, Gehlot said the Constitution does not allow reservation on economic basis and due to that poor people in general category miss out on opportunities.

“There was a complaint by poor of the general category that they could not avail of government benefits. The decision has been taken after much consideration. This bill will uplift the poor,” he said.

He appealed to the members to pass the bill unanimously. This was followed by the start of the debate by BJP member Prabhat Jha. But as shouting and uproar continued, Deputy Chairman Harivansh adjourned the House till 2 p.m.

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The Constitution (124th Amendment) Bill was passed after a division with 323 members voting in its favour and three against in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday.

Earlier in the day too, the House was adjourned once up to noon after protests by members on the “unilateral” extension. (IANS)