11:00 – 12:00 – Question Hour
Ministries questioned under Question Hour:
1) Ministries of Atomic Energy
2) Ministry of Personnel , Public Grievances and Pensions
3) Ministry of Railways
4) Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship
5) Ministry of Development Of North East Region
6) Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation – MPLADS Fund
1) Ministries of Atomic Energy : Questions were primarily raised on nuclear power generation and the status of new nuclear plants(npp) in the state of Haryana . Concern was expressed regarding the health issues and negative public opinion regarding nuclear energy. Inquiry was also made about the self sufficiency of the Indian government in nuclear power production.
Dr. Jitendra Singh (MoS) , Independent Charge Prime Minister Office
NPP – The member stated that a nuclear power project had been established in North Haryana, which would be operational by 2021.
Self Sufficiency – As far as self sufficiency in nuclear power production was concerned , the member pointed out that earlier only two PSUs ( Nuclear Power Corporation and Bhavni ) were involved in atomic energy production. Now, the government has initiated joint ventures with other PSUs to reduce the reliance on external resources on nuclear energy production.
Health and Public Opinion : The member pointed out that as far as public perception regarding nuclear energy is concerned, the government is collaborating with representatives of civil society to alter the image of nuclear energy within the larger public. He pointed out that as part of safety regulations the Indian nuclear power plants have been established beyond the seismic zone
2) Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions: Performance: Questions were raised on measures to increase the importance, role and efficiency of bureaucrats.
Dr. Jitendra Singh (MoS) , Independent Charge Prime Minister Office
The Member explained that certain safeguards have been implemented for the bureaucrats. The suspension process has been made more stringent. A broad based review committee has been initiated which would review any suspension matter. The transfer policy of bureaucrats with specially abled children have been modified in their favour.
3) Ministry of Railways : Questions were raised on the collaboration with World Bank for the Railway Development Fund. The time stipulated for the development of the fund, and the percentage allocation of both the partners. Inquiry was also made about external financial aid to the Mumbai Panvel elevated train . The new train corridor was announced in the Budget.
Shri Suresh Prabu , Railways minister
The member replied that talks had begun with the World Bank. Any tangible result would be promptly presented. The railway ministers also declared that the budget allocation for state of Uttar Pradesh under the present Railway budget is the highest ever.
4) Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship : Questions were raised on lack of employment options for skilled youth, the requirements of skilled labour which emigrates, Nehru Yuva Kendra, Industrial Training Institutes (ITI).
Questions were raised on the lack of employability options for the youth in spite of skill development . More information was sought on the new infrastructure for Industrial Training Institutes (ITI).
Another section of questions dealt with needs of labour which emigrates abroad. Needs of the labour include training and certification requirements.
Shri Rajiv Pratap Rudy (MoS) , Independent Charge, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship
Employability : The member replied that industry linkages are very important skill development. Sector Skills Councils have instituted for this purpose. The National Skill Development Corporation has conducted a Skill gap study . Model Skills Centre is established in every district. Convergence of various ministries on skill would be a long drawn out process.
Emigration : The member emphasized the plight of labour which emigrates , especially the section of population which shifts to the Middle East. As far as the needs of the emigrating labour are concerned , the member pointed out that a Domestic Help Sector Skill Council has been established.
ITI : Two new schemes under World Bank are under consideration for the development of the ITIs . Resources are being raised for the development of 500 ITIs under PPP mode.
5) Ministry of Development of North East Region : Questions were raised on the delay in the completion of schemes within the North East region.
Dr. Jitendra Singh (MoS) , Independent Charge , DONER
The member expressed concern about the delay of projects in the North East. He explained that there are some community resistance to the projects which have to be dealt with at the community level. Coordination between states for certain schemes does lead to some delay .
6) Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation : MPLADS fund : Questions were raised on the increase of MPLADs fund, especially in case of natural disasters. This is because voters feel certain dissatisfaction with their elected representative in times of distress.
V.K. Singh MoS ( Independent Charge) , Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation
The member pointed out that in case of natural disasters ministers are urged to utilize the resources of the MPLADS fund. However , the MPLADS fund is not meant for individual grievances , but for developmental schemes.
12:35 – 15:30 Short duration Discussion under Rule 193
Topic : Situation arising out of alleged money laundering involving Aircel-Maxis in the wake of recent joint raids by the Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax Department.
The discussion began with Mr. Sugata Bose (TMC) and the last speaker under the discussion was Mr. Arun Jaitley (BJP).
The discussion turned to the larger issues of corruption within India. The government reiterated its firm stand against corruption
15:30 – 20:41 Motion of Thanks on the President’s Address
The Motion was opened with the speech by Mr. Thota Narsimham (TDP) and the last speaker of the day was Shri R.K. BharatHi Mohan.
The topics covered in the speeches were the incidents in Hyderbad and Jawaharlal Nehru universities , the Jat agitation, general poverty alleviation ,’Make in India’ initiative , skill development etc
11:00 – 12:00 – Question Hour
Ministries questioned under Question Hour:
1) Ministry Of Shipping
2) Ministry of New and Renewable Energy
3) Ministry of Law and Justice
Ministry of Law and Justice : Questions were raised about the establishment of a special court for rape victims and female under-trials in each district of all the states. Another point of inquiry was, the establishment of a High Court in Amravati , capital of Andhra Pradesh. Another point was raised about the conduct of lawyers in relation to their low income litigants.
Shri D.V. Sadananda Gowda, Ministry of Law and Justice
The member replied that cases of rape victims are dealt in fast track courts under a fixed time frame. As far as the High Court of Andhra Pradesh is concerned, the matter stands pending before the High Court of Hyderbad.
Ministry of Shipping : Questions were raised on the modernization and efficiency of the ports in India .
Shri Nitin Gadkari , Minister of Road transport, Highways , Port Development and Shipping
The member replied that the this year, for the first time, the profits of the government ports have increased by 1.4 % as compared to the private ports. Modernization and mechanization of the Tuticorin port has already begun. No new leases are being issued to prevent encroachment on the Mumbai port. There is a plan to link the Haldiya and Kolkatta port to the Brahamaputra river to increase traffic. The coal traffic to Pardip port would be significantly increased through a railway link between Pardip and Talcher, which is under consideration.
Ministry of New and Renewable Energy : Questions were primarily raised on solar power production within the country
Shri Piyush Ghosh , Mos ( Independent Charge), Ministry for Power, Coal, New and Renewable Energy
The member replied that 33 solar parks have been approved in the country which produce 20,000 megawatt of solar energy . The cost of solar energy has been reduced from Rs 7-7.5 per unit to Rs 4.3-5 per unit. The member emphasized the establishment of the headquarters of the International Solar Alliance in Gurgaon, Haryana. He also stated that the three solar parks which have a capacity of 500 megawatt have been approved in Haryana.
The member further explained the cost of non renewable sources of energy like solar power or hydro power remains the same for 25 years. This is in comparison to energy produced from coal which would always increase with time.
12:00 – 12:30 Legislative Business
Introduction of The Aadhaar ( Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies , Benefits and Services ) Bill, 2016
Status of the concerned bill as one of money bill
Aadhar card: not to be an evidence of citizenship
Protection of privacy of the citizens
12:30 – 13:45 Motion of Thanks
The Prime Minister gave his views on the President’s speech. Key points in his speech was promotion of discussion in the House, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA), the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna ( PMGSY), poverty alleviation , the Aadhaar Bill (2016). He also gave his views on the role and accountability of bureaucrats.
15:00 – 18:00 Discussion of the Railway Bill
Revenue Points were raised on means of increasing internal revenue generation of the Indian Railways. This is because the Railway Budget announced a massive restricting plan.
Safety : The Railways were commended for the massive outreach programme it carries out through Twitter. This programme provides for the safety and security for the passengers especially senior citizens and women. Unmanned crossings were flagged as major safety concern.
Demands for new railway lines were made.
18:00 – 21:00 Discussion of Private Member’s Bills
The members requested for certain developmental works within their constituency
11:00 – 12:00 Question Hour
Ministries to be questioned
1) Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare
2) Ministry of Environment and Forests
3) Ministry of Chemical and Fertilizers
1) Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare : Questionswere raised primarily on horticulture development within India. There was concern expressed over the post harvest wastage . Farmer’s difficulties due to price dips in onion and potato prices were also pointed out. Different members inquired about the horticulture development in their respective states.
Shri Sanjeev Balyan (MoS) : The member responded cold chains had been established under National Horticulture Board to prevent harvest loss. There is a market intervention scheme to protect farmer’s from price dips. The States can ask the Centre for funds under the scheme. Through the National Agriculture Market (NAM) , it is proposed to integrate all the mandis.
2) Ministry Of Environment and Forests : The cluster of questions focused on the certification process of environmental clearance. Another group of questions were based on human animal conflict i.e tiger , leopard attacks on lay population especially the impact of these attacks on tribals.
Shri Prakash Javadekar : The member replied that the ministry has streamlined the whole process of acquiring environmental clearance for projects. The number of days involved in the process have been reduced from 600 days to 190 days. The time period for the Terms of reference process has been reduced from 13 months to 1 month.
The member revealed that fodder and water augmentation are being done for sanctuaries to prevent the animals from preying outside. He pointed out that the government compensated such victims with the sum of Rs 10,00,000. The member also pointed out the success of Project Tiger which covers 13 states.
3) Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers : The first cluster of questions focused on the establishment of the petrochemical complex in Iran. The guidelines of the project, and the benefits which the complex would entail. The second cluster of questions centred on low prices for drugs.
Shri Hansraj Gangaram Ahir (MoS) : The member responded that since India lacked sufficient natural sources of natural gas and petroleum , the state has to rely on other countries. Talks are being held with Iran to further synthesise the project. This project would aid the development of plastic and chemical industry within India. It would also provide employment. Further, the final processing of products would be done within India. Also 10 % of the jobs in the complex would be reserved for Indians
The member pointed out that the government already provided some of the the drugs for cancer ,HIV, TB and kidney disease at a low price. Also the prices are changed according to World Wholesale Price.
12:00 – 12:15
Finance Minister withdraws clause 138 and 139 from the budget speech.
These clauses dealt with tax proposals for EPF/ Superannuation Fund.
Introduction of the Enemy Property ( Amendment and Validation ) Bill by Shri Kiren Rijiju
The members gave speeches on International Women’s day. Female members of the house emphasized on female education which would make women independent. This would allow them to increased their participation in policy making
15:00 – 20:00
Discussion on the Railway Budget 2016-17
The points discussed were :
- Demand for new railway lines, stations by members
- Operating ratio
- Cleanliness, Swacch Bharat
- Safety of women
- Facilities for mothers with infant children
- Joint Ventures and PPP for development of new projects
- Fiscal deficit of the Indian Railway
11:00 – 12:00 Question Hour
Ministries which were questioned
1) Ministry of External Affairs – Foreign recruitment agencies
2) Ministry of Urban Development – Status of Slums, Housing for all
3) Ministry of Railways – Destruction of Railway property
4) Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation – MPLADS Scheme
1) Ministry of External Affairs : Questions were primarily raised on the exploitative practices of Fraudulent Recruitment Agencies. These agencies hire Indians in other countries under the garb of employment . Workers are mistreated and their passports are taken away. Particular concern was raised on the abuse of female workers who go to work in other countries
Shrimati Sushma Swaraj : The member responded that there two new portals called eMigrate (https://emigrate.gov.in/ext/) and Madad (https://org2.passportindia.gov.in/AppConsularProject/welcomeLink) have been set up which would address this situation. eMigrate a platform for official registration of the recruitment agencies which employ Indians abroad. MADAD is a consular grievances monitoring system, where complaints would be registered. This would increase transparency and responsibility.
For female workers i.e. domestic help the ministry has decided that they will not go abroad through these recruitment agencies but through states agencies.
2) Ministry of Urban Development : Questions were primarily raised about slum growth and the rehabilitation of the slum dwellers. Another point of inquiry was the progress of the Housing for All programme.
Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu : The member responded that Housing for All would be implemented through the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna (PMAY) scheme . Within PMAY adequate attention has been given to slum development. One of the results of urbanization is growth of slums. Hence more emphasis has been laid in urban areas under the housing for all programme. The minister pointed out that vertical buildings could be made for slum development. If a proposal is sent by the states for slum development, the Centre would provide a subsidy 1,00,000.
The member informed the assembly that 5,08,902 houses had been sanctioned so far.
3) Ministry of Railways : Concern was expressed over the destruction of railway property during protests.
Shri Suresh Prabhu : The member responded that along with the railways , district administration was also responsible for the protection of railway property. A suggestion was made to combine that Government Railway Police (GRP) and Railway Protection Force ( RPF) . GRP operates under the state government and RPF in under the Ministry of Railways.
4) Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation : Questions were raised on the paucity of the MPLADs fund. Five crore per annum is sanctioned under the MPLAD scheme. However , after calculation the sum is not enough for the developmental works in the constituency.
Shri Vijay Kumar Singh (MoS) :The member responded that the execution and implementation of the scheme is undertaken by the state government . The Centre keeps a broad check. The member further clarified that increase of funds is under consultation, any update would be given to the house.
12:00 – 13:00
Matters of General Public Importance
Members raised issues related to thier constituency .
14:10 – 15:05
Statement on the Railway Budget 2016-17 by Mr. Suresh Prabhu
The Minister replied to all the concerns raised in the general discussion of the Railway Budget. He covered many crucial points like new sources of revenue for the railways, monetization of land, cost optimization, fiscal deficit and the Mumbai Ahemdabad bullet train. He also informed the house of an Annual Report on all the programmes proposed in the previous budget. This document could be accessed by the members.
Other members raised certain points on his speech.
15:05 – 17:50
Statutory Resolution : Disapproval of the Enemy Property ( Amendment and Validation ) Ordinance 2016.It was moved by Shri N K Premchandran , Kollam.
- The members commentated on the ordinance route of legislation. Ordinances are promulgated under extraordinary circumstances according to the Article 123 of the Constitution.
- The members voiced the 2005 Supreme Court verdict of Union Of India & Another vs Raja Mohammed Amir Mohammad Khan , (http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/imgs1.aspx?filename=27280) which directly pertains to ‘enemy property’.
- The amendment changes the succession law, stating that Indian citizens cannot inherit ‘enemy property’ within Indian state boundaries.
- The members also voiced the need for the bill to be submitted to a standing committee.
- The Statutory Resolution was negatived.
18:00 : Enemy Property ( Amendment and Validation ) Ordinance 2016 was passed.