‘Don’t bother about numbers’: PM Modi to oppn ahead of new Parliament session

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New Delhi, June 17: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday assured the opposition that their ‘every word’ will be taken seriously by the government despite the NDA’s numerical advantage in Parliament. The Prime Minister was speaking outside Parliament moments before the beginning of the first session of the 17th Lok Sabha.
“The role of an opposition and an active opposition is important in a Parliamentary democracy. The opposition need not bother about their numbers. Whatever numbers opposition parties may have got from the people, we will take their every word seriously. I hope they speak actively and participate in house proceedings,” said PM Modi.
The BJP?led NDA has 353 MPs in the lower house of Parliament that has a total strength of 545. The BJP?alone has 303 MPs, while the second largest party in the house, the Congress has 52 MPs.
Further stressing on the need to work with the opposition, the PM said, “When we come to Parliament, we should forget ‘Paksh’ (the Treasury) and ‘Vipaksh’ (the Opposition). We should think about issues with a ‘Nishpaksh’ (objective) spirit and work in the larger interest of the nation.
“My experience also suggests that when Parliament functions smoothly, we are able to fulfil numerous aspirations of the people of India,” he said.
PM Modi’s outreach is a continuation from yesterday’s all-party meeting where he requested floor leaders of various political parties to keep their differences aside to avoid disruptions in proceedings.
“We are for the people… We cannot win hearts by disrupting the functioning of Parliament. All parties must keep political differences aside and commit themselves to tireless work for the nation’s progress,” the Prime Minister said while chairing the meeting at the Parliament complex ahead of the Budget session on Sunday.
The session, which will conclude on July 26, will see the tabling of the Triple Talaq bill and a legislation to allow the voluntary use of Aadhaar as an identity proof for opening bank accounts and getting mobile phone connections. Opposition has demanded that issues like farm distress, unemployment and drought crisis be taken up for discussions in the first session.
The Union Budget will be presented on July 5.
The fresh bill to ban instant triple talaq will be introduced in Parliament to replace an ordinance issued in February. Under the proposed law, instant triple talaq will be illegal and attract a jail term of three years. The previous bill had not cleared the Rajya Sabha hurdle and lapsed with the dissolution of the 16th Lok Sabha. (Courtesy: HT)