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Rajya Sabha passes Juvenile Justice Bill amid din, no discussion

The Bill seeks to expedite adoption of children by transferring the power to issue adoption orders from civil court to the district magistrate.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
July 29, 2021 3:05:30 am
Opposition members protest in the Well of the Upper House. (PTI)

The Rajya Sabha on Wednesday passed the Juvenile Justice Amendment Bill, 2021, in less than half-an-hour amid protests, and without any discussion.

The Bill seeks to expedite adoption of children by transferring the power to issue adoption orders from civil court to the district magistrate.

In her introductory remarks, Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani called on all MPs to set politics aside and help children who “deserve” and “need” Parliament’s protection. In an attempt to demonstrate the Centre’s commitment towards protecting children, Irani drew a comparison between budget allocation for this purpose during the UPA regime and under the incumbent government. “In 2009-10, a meagre Rs 60 crore was given to protect children across the country. However, it is a compliment not only to the vision but humanity of the Prime Minister that in 2021, over Rs 1,500 crore has been given only to the protection of children,” she said.

Irani’s remarks were interrupted as Bhubaneswar Kalita, who was in the Chair, adjourned the House for half-an-hour after an MP fell sick. On resumption, the Chair called names of 15 members to discuss the Bill. While most were absent, some such as SP’s Jaya Bachchan requested Kalita to bring the House in order first.

NCP’s Fauzia Khan refused to participate in the discussion and said, “The minister just said that children need protection, but the nation needs more protection. That is why we need a discussion on national security. Children are the future of the nation and they deserve a secure nation.”

With no MP coming forward to participate in the discussion, the Chair got the Bill passed amid ruckus and adjourned the House till Thursday.

Earlier in the day, the House was adjourned twice amid protests by Opposition on the Pegasus issue and the farm laws. It proceeded with Question Hour despite the commotion.

During Question Hour, responding to multiple queries on air cargo services, Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said that in the last two years, share of Indian carriers in international cargo business has increased from 2 per cent to 19 per cent, and total revenue was Rs 2,644 crore in 2020-2021, up from Rs 86 crore the previous year.

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