Nation Politics 23 Apr 2016 As Opposition plans ...

As Opposition plans drought attack in Parliament, Speaker calls meet

Published Apr 23, 2016, 10:23 am IST
Updated Apr 23, 2016, 10:23 am IST
Lok Sabha Speaker has called an all-party meeting on April 24.
Parliament house (Photo: PTI)
 Parliament house (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: Several states across the country facing severe drought and the constitutional crisis prevailing in Uttarakhand are the two issues that the Opposition parties, led by the Congress, plan to focus on to singe the government in Parliament when the second part of the Budget Session begins on April 25. Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan has called an all-party meeting on April 24 to ensure smooth functioning of both Houses.

The Opposition, though, has prepared the stage to discuss significant matters in Parliament and notices have been given to Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari regarding this, clearly indicating that the forthcoming session is going to be stormy. The session begins in the middle of a raging political controversy over the Uttarkhand political crisis in which the Centre’s role has come in for scathing criticism.


The session, which commences on April 25, is in fact the second part of the Budget Session, but since both Houses were prorogued after the first part ended on March 16, this will be a new session. It will be the eighth session of the 16th Lok Sabha and 239th session of the Rajya Sabha.

Drought in 10 states and the resultant water scarcity will also be raised in a big way by the Opposition parties, some of whom have already given notice in this regard to the Chair.

The Congress is bracing to attack the government and rope in other Opposition parties on the Uttarakhand issue.


Congress deputy leader in the Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma on April 21 had given a notice to Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari under Rule 267 for taking up the resolution after suspending all business. The resolution seeks to “deplore” the “destabilisation” of the democratically elected government in Uttarakhand and “disapprove” the “unjustified” imposition of President’s Rule there under Article 356 of the Constitution.

Apart from this, the Opposition parties have also been targeting the government over the prevailing drought, accusing it of turning a “blind eye” to the problem and asking for an all-party meeting to discuss it and the resultant water crisis in the country.


Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha and senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad and his party colleagues Anand Sharma, Hussain Dalwai, Bhubaneswar Kalita, Rajani Patil, Viplove Thakur, Mohammed Ali Khan, A.U. Singh Deo (BJD), K.C. Tyagi (JD-U), Satish Chandra Mishra (BSP), Independent member Rajeev Chandrasekhar and nominated member K.T.S. Tulsi have already given a notice to the Rajya Sabha Chairman in this regard, which has been admitted.

The notice seeks a discussion on the “serious situation arising out of prevailing drought and heat wave conditions and resultant water crisis in the country and the remedial measures taken by the government in regard thereto”. The notice has been admitted under Rule 177 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business and the issue will be discussed on April 27.


Claiming that the Centre has no “serious” plan in place to tackle drought, the CPI had already demanded the government convene an all-party meeting to discuss the calamity and figure out ways to combat it.

The Congress demanded Prime Minister Narendra Modi call a meeting of chief ministers of drought-hit states to tackle the situation on a war footing. Uttar Pradesh CM Akhilesh Yadav recently accused the Centre of turning a blind eye to drought-hit Bundelkhand.

Amid criticism of the government, rural development minister Birender Singh has rued that over Rs 1,500 crore from Central funds is lying unspent with the states and that this could have been used to mitigate the drinking water crisis in drought-hit areas.


Location: India, Delhi, New Delhi