Skip to content
Home » New politics for a brand new Parliament

New politics for a brand new Parliament


The daybreak of a brand new yr is a customary and solemn event for reflecting on the time passed by and resolving on the best way ahead, with a distinction based mostly on expertise and classes realized. Such reflection and new decision are extra apt and well timed for making a distinction to the functioning of Parliament. Extra so, when the apex legislature of the nation will get relocated in a brand new constructing within the new yr — 100 years after the current one started to take form. Additionally, impartial India will full 75 years in 2022. This event can’t be missed in our collective quest for a brand new regular for the functioning of our Parliament, the temple of democracy.

A case for reflection

A brand new constructing per se doesn’t add a lot worth to the functioning of Parliament, except it’s accompanied by a brand new work ethic to revive its stature. Sadly, the virus of disruption that contaminated the apex legislature about 20 years again has remained endemic and has change into extra virulent in the previous few years. It’s afflicting each the Homes in various levels, given the variations in composition.

The final two classes of the Rajya Sabha have left a bitter style with productiveness of solely 28% and 47%, respectively. With annual productiveness of 58.9%, 2021 is the second-worst for the Higher Home, which hit the nadir with productiveness of 36% in 2018. Two of its worst-performing years got here over the last 4 years. It’s, therefore, a matter of significant concern, warranting equally grave reflection and introspection so {that a} new regular of working is discovered to justify a brand new Parliament advanced.

Subversion of democracy

Parliament features in a sure political milieu and is therefore a political establishment. Political motives play out influencing the functioning of various sections of the Homes of Parliament. Protests are part of political contestation that’s integral to the functioning of legislatures. However persistent disruptions, disregarding the sanctity of the foundations and the authority of the Chair, derailing the functioning of the Home, subvert democracy that the individuals of India opted for as a car of transformation of their lives, as said within the Preamble of the Structure.

Persistent disruptions and compelled adjournments compromise the standard of laws apart from ensuing within the abdication of the essential “oversight” perform of the Home. Beneath the Structure, the manager is accountable to the legislature. This oversight perform is ensured by Query Hour, Brief Period Discussions (SDD), Calling Consideration Notices (CAN), and debates on legislative proposals.

Disruptions render the Home dysfunctional, with a considerable share of the scheduled out there time misplaced as forfeited. With legislative enterprise conventionally getting precedence, sufficient time just isn’t left for SDD and CAN. The winter session din prevented dialogue on worth rise, and the Omicron outbreak was debated solely in passing. The Rajya Sabha misplaced over 60% of the Query Hour time in the course of the winter session and much more in the course of the monsoon session.

Parliamentary democracy permits the participation of the individuals in governance by their elected representatives. Swaraj, for which a long-drawn freedom wrestle was waged, is all about individuals so governing themselves. That is the consultant perform of legislatures. High quality debates represent the deliberative perform.

Dereliction of those 4 features by legislatures — consultant, deliberative, oversight, and law-making — quantities to a sure negation of the spirit and provisions of the Structure. It’s time this worrisome parliamentary deficit is addressed when impartial India is ready to enter its 76th yr, and Parliament is to maneuver into a brand new constructing. This shouldn’t be troublesome if solely the legislators remind themselves of their oath of allegiance to the Structure.

Why disrupt?

Democratic functioning is all about debates and deliberations. A practical democracy permits the presentation of various views and even the most well liked political contestation on the ground of the Home. A disruptive and noisy various, on present at current, is its negation. Nobody wins within the din.

The foundation explanation for disruptions seems to be the rising discord between the political mission and the parliamentary venture. All political events have to remind themselves that also they are sure by the Structure. Events successful the individuals’s mandate govern, whereas others don the mantle of a accountable and constructive Opposition. Each side have a duty in direction of the individuals who determine the composition of law-making our bodies. It’s this realisation of collective duty that makes Parliament practical.

Parliament shouldn’t be considered as a mere extension of politics. Politics ought to additional the reason for the parliamentary venture. This new politics is the necessity of the hour.

Politics and Parliament, every with a selected mission, are integral to democracy. The mission of politics is to win the mandate of the individuals with guarantees of bettering the standard of their lives. The mission of Parliament is to delineate the trail for realising such guarantees. In essence, these two missions are complementary to one another and never mutually unique. So then why the discord and disruptions? The issue lies in drawing a line between protests and obstructive disruptions.

It then logically follows that what is required is a synchronic vibration between the political mission and Parliament. It’s this resonance with which we have to enter the brand new yr with a resolve that this harmony marks the functioning of our Parliament within the new grand construction in order that our parliamentary democracy shines in a brand new grandeur. Hopefully, we’ll discover a New Parliament. A spirit of lodging amongst varied sections of Parliament, guided by new politics to subserve the nationwide mission, is the important thing to this much- desired resonance. Debate and determine. Don’t disrupt democracy.

M Venkaiah Naidu is the Vice-President of India

The views expressed are private


Supply hyperlink