Issues Before Parliament
Issues Before Parliament
By V Shanmuganathan
The winter session of the Parliament begins on November 22, 2011. It is announced by the Lok Sabha Secretariat that the session will go upto December 21, 2011. The house is expected to function for 23 working days. The government intends to pass 31 bills in both the houses of Parliament.
Ahead of the winter session, leader of the house, Pranab Mukherjee, held a meeting with the Leaders of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley for Rajya Sabha at his office in north block. The past master Pranab Mukherjee might have felt that the meeting of the opposition leaders personally, will ensure smooth conduct of business in the house. The principal opposition party, BJP, is preparing to take up serious issues concerning the nation and the day to day sufferings of the common people .The session is likely to be thunderous and uproarious in many ways.
BJP will raise the issue of black money in a big way. LK Advaniji at the age of 84, mobilised public opinion by taking Jan Chetna Yatra. He travelled through 23 states, 5 union territories and 100 districts of India covering a road distance of about 7600 km. Apart from corruption and inflation, he spoke in detail about the black money particularly huge amount stashed away in foreign banks including in Swiss banks. Not only powerful countries like USA, Germany, France, but smaller countries like Philippines, Peru, South Korea and Nigeria have taken effective steps to get back their money. He regretted that the response of the UPA govt has been of gross indifference. Recently the Swiss ambassador to India publicly stated that his government is willing to render all help if India shows the political will. The country is entitled to know what meaningful steps are being taken to bring them back and why their names are not being brought to public domain. There is reason to suspect the very intention of the govt. Disclosure will cause serious embarrassment to the ruling congress party.
On another front, Anna Hazare's campaign against corruption is giving jittery to government. The Lokpal bill is likely to draw the attention of the media, intelligentsia and public at large. It will be tough challenge for the government to pass the Lokpal bill. The UPA-II is reeling under repeated jolts of scams and scandals. It is blamed for its unethical way of handling financial dealings. It is very difficult to defend themselves. They want to amend RTI. They cast aspersion on CAG. They are not cooperating with PAC. They are perturbed about Supreme Court monitoring their activities. Congress has to bear the brunt of criticism of the opposition as well as from its own allies.
The opposition parties are aggressive and antagonistic. They are planning to take up serious failures, scams and mismanagement as the main stick to beat the government. Ruling coalition will face a tough situation when issues like Telengana, land acquisition and communal violence bills are taken for discussion. Latest dealings of the government with Pakistan and Bangladesh will invite wide criticism.
The UPA-II has become insensitive to certain serious problems. The blockade of national highways by militant outfit, which has chocked all supplies to the landlocked state of Manipur is going on for more than 100 days. The sufferings of the people are unthinkable. It is not only that those essential commodities are not available and people have to shell fortune for purchasing them, but to access these commodities people have to surrender to the black-market. The government did not act against the black-marketers and ensured proper supply by providing necessary escort to the convoy.
This is a testimony of utter failure of the state Government and complete negligence by the Central Government Can we imagine any other highways would have been allowed to be blocked like this for such a long period? This puts question mark on the very intentions of the Central Government This shows callous attitude and total insensitivity, which deserves all out condemnation. The people of Manipur are angry against this inaction and are asking a straight forward question, “whether Central Government thinks Manipur as part of India or not?”
As the state has failed in sorting out the deadlock, maintaining law and order and is engaged in massive corruption, BJP has demanded immediate dismissal of Ibobi Singh led SPF Government BJP also demanded that Central Government should immediately and decisively act to end the deadlock.
A high level BJP delegation met the Prime Minister and apprised him the worsening situation in the state of Manipur 10 days ago but nothing has moved. There is a need to assuage the feelings of the people of Manipur.
Apart from the above said issues, another major concern is that the government is miserably failed to bring solace to the day to day sufferings of the common people. The government has not brought any economic success by new policy initiative. There is a fear that the country’s growth is derailed by the mismanagement of the UPA-II government.
The inflation for the month of October at 9.73 per cent is a testimony of complete failure of Congress led UPA-II Government’s economic policies and RBI’s fiscal measures. Unless Government addresses supply side constraints, it won’t succeed in controlling the inflation. The RBI measures have backfired and have played actually a trigger for pushing up the inflation. It resulted in raising the cost of finance and thereby making Indian exports uncompetitive.
BJP is insisting to bring down petrol prices by rupees five per liter and provide rupees five essential commodities like rice, wheat, dal, edible oil and sugar at a subsidised rate to APL families as an immediate relief to the helpless citizens.
Of course, it is not easy to find consensus and move forward but at the same time, it is the responsibility of the ruling government, to create consensus and frame legislation. People expect a meaningful dialogue and constructive approach to find a way to end poverty by bringing all round success to the nation.