‘I can call any of you any time’: PM Modi talks tough to MPs on Parliamentary attendance

On Monday, several questions were not taken up in the Rajya Sabha as the ministers were not present to answer them.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: March 21, 2017 12:23 pm
narendra modi, parliament, lok sabha, rajya sabha, BJP, BJP minister attendance, BJP MP attendance, BJP MP lok sabha Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the party’s parliamentary board meeting in New Delhi on Sunday (PTI Photo by Shahbaz Khan)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked BJP members to ensure their presence in Parliament amid instances of lack of quorum in both the Lok Sabha as well as the Rajya Sabha. The prime minister’s direction came at the party’s parliamentary meeting in the national capital. The ongoing budget session of Parliament, that convened on January 31, will conclude on April 12.

At the meeting, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar spoke about incidents of lack of quorum in both Houses prompting an ‘unhappy’ prime minister to tell the MPs that attending Parliament is their basic responsibility.

“I can call any of you any time,” the PM told the MPs, a member told PTI. This was the first time the PM talked tough about attendance even though he has raised it earlier.

On Monday, several questions were not taken up in the Rajya Sabha as the ministers were not present to answer them. In some cases, certain members who had raised the questions were not present either. Towards the end of the question hour, only a handful of ministers like Nirmala Sitharaman and Sanjeev Balyan were present, both of whom are not part of the union cabinet.

The low attendance of the ministers prompted the Congress members to complain to Rajya Sabha chairman Hamid Ansari who in turn said, “This is not a happy state of affairs.” Ghulam Nabi Azad, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, said, “This is an example of ‘maximum ministers, minimum governance’.”

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