Suspension, expulsion & smoke incident marked Winter Session ends a day in advance

Both houses of Parliament adjourned sine die on Thursday, a day before scheduled closing of the Winter Session which was marked by suspension of over 140 Members of Parliament belonging to opposition parties, a major security breach and expulsion of TMC MP Mahua Moitra.

With regard to the business of the House, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, delivering his valedictory address, informed that the session lasted for about 61 hours 50 minutes. “House productivity during the fourteenth Session of 17th Lok Sabha was 74 per cent,” he said.

Major bills

Suspension of MPs continued even on Thursday while legislative action continued with passage of three Bills to repeal Indian Penal Code, Code of Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act in Rajya Sabha.

At the same time, Lok Sabha cleared the Telecom Bill, the Chief Election Commissioner and Other Election Commissioners (Appointment, Conditions of Service and Term of Office) Bill and the Press and Registration of Periodicals Bill. All these bills have already been cleared in the other house. Now all these bills will be sent to the President and once she gives her assent, these will become law.

During the session, 12 Government Bills were introduced and 18 Bills were passed, Some of the important bills passed by the House during the Session includes the Bharatiya Nyaya (Second) Sanhita Bill, the Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha (Second) Sanhita Bill, the Bharatiya Sakshya (Second) Bill, the Central Goods and Services Tax (Second Amendment) Bill and the Telecommunications Bill, 2023. Birla mentioned that 55-starred questions were answered orally during the Session. A total number of 265 matters were taken up under Rule 377.

Eventful session

This Session, which could be the last full-fledged session of the Lok Sabha before the general election, will be remembered for a number of negatives. First, 97 opposition MPs from Lok Sabha and 46 opposition MPs from Rajya Sabha were suspended on account of alleged “unruly conduct.” These MPs were agitation on December 13 ‘smoke’ incident and pressing for reply from the Home Minister.

Second, two youths jumped from visitor gallery and used canisters to cause smoke incidence on the day which was co-incidently 22nd anniversary of deadly terror attacks on the Parliament. Third, the session also witnessed the government and the opposition clash over the expulsion of Trinamool MP Mahua Moitra over the ‘cash-for-query’ case. Moitra has denied all charges and now faces a CBI inquiry. She has moved the Supreme Court against her compulsion.

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