Alleging that the Narendra Modi government used Parliament as a “rubber stamp” during its previous tenure, the Congress on Monday hoped that this trend will be reversed and key Bills will not be pushed without necessary legislative scrutiny.
The opposition party’s assertion came in response to Prime Minister Modi’s remarks ahead of Parliament session that the Opposition need not “bother about their numbers” as their every word is “valuable” to the government.
Senior Congress leader and former minister Anand Sharma said: “Legislation through ordinance is a very unhealthy practice in a democracy. It should only be in extreme cases where there is an emergency requirement, otherwise the due processes of lawmaking must to be followed by the government in office.”
Sharma said, “We will now wait for the Prime Minister’s assurance in this regard and whether the practice that was followed in the last five years is reversed. In the last five years, what we have seen was disrespect to Parliament, where Bills were brought by the government and because of its brute majority in Lok Sabha, Parliament was treated as a rubber stamp.”
Most Bills were not sent to the standing committee for legislative scrutiny, which is important for any law to be made, the Rajya Sabha member said.
“We hope this practice will now be honoured (and) all Bills will be brought and the dependence on ordinance and pushing through the Bills without scrutiny will not be repeated.”
Congress president Rahul Gandhi, who was travelling for the last few days and was not present during initial hours of the Parliament, attended the House later and took oath as Lok Sabha member.
Rahul, who had also contested from Amethi and lost from that seat, later tweeted, “My 4th consecutive term as a Member of the #LokSabha begins today. Representing Wayanad, Kerala, I begin my new innings in Parliament by taking my oath this afternoon, affirming that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of India.”