Rajya Sabha is tough battleground for the NDA government as the numbers are not in its favour. As the first half of the Budget Session got over, Pratul Sharma spoke to Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi for the treasury bench’s hits and misses in the Upper House.
What were the government’s achievements in the Budget Session?
The first part of the session has been productive. Many important Bills such as Aadhar, Real Estate, Waterways, and Bureau of Indian Standards were passed. Last time, the Budget was not even discussed, but this time MPs sat till late in the evening to discuss issues.
Opposition parties tried to corner the government on JNU, Pathankot attack, etc. Were they successful?
Our commitment was to allow discussion. We agreed to issues under parliamentary quorum. They made their point, and the government also made its stance clear. Now it is up to the public to judge who made a more satisfactory point. We were successful in presenting the ground reality and truth.
Sessions are getting disrupted.
Friction between the Opposition and government is increasing.
These circumstances are created because of the Opposition’s arrogance and not being able to handle defeat. The ruling party is open to any amendments they move on any Bill and present their views. But if they want to score political points, that is not right. In the process, they harm people-related issues.
What can be expected in the second part of the session?
It will see discussion on the working of ministries. From the legislative point of view, the GST Bill is the most important. We expect to pass it in the second half of the session. Even numbers in favour of the government may increase if the seven new members are nominated.