Congress leader Anand Sharma on Monday said that there was no mention of national security in the address delivered by President Ram Nath Kovind at the beginning of the Parliament’s Budget Session on January 31.
“There was no mention of the situation at our borders,” Sharma said in Rajya Sabha. “One lakh security personnel have been deployed at China border. Newspapers in the country know, foreign departments know, shouldn’t this be discussed in Parliament?”
Sharma said that the government had earlier assured the House of an in-camera briefing regarding the situation with China but “nothing was ever done”.
India and China have been locked in a border standoff since their troops clashed in Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh in June last year. Twenty Indian soldiers were killed in the clash. China put the number of casualties on its side at four.
During Monday’s address, Sharma said that the President’s speech was just a “laundry list” of achievements done by the Narendra Modi-led government.
“This is not sarcasm but whoever wrote the speech [President’s address] did injustice to the President,” Sharma had said. “This challenges the judgement of the people and negates the difficult situation before the country.”
Sharma claimed that as many as 42 crore people in the country don’t have jobs. “Read your economic survey for the level of unemployment in the country,” he said.
The senior Congress leader also raised the matter of hate speeches against minorities in the country.
At the “dharam sansad”, or religious parliament, held in Uttarakhand’s Haridwar city between December 17 and December 19, Hindutva group members and seers had asked Hindus to buy weapons to commit genocide against Muslims.
“And since the world is interconnected by technology, what we say here is flashed at various capitals of the worlds in a minute,” Sharma said. “Other countries are asking should this happen in India?”
While delivering his remarks, Sharma had said that this could be his last speech in the Rajya Sabha as his term comes to an end. He was elected unopposed to the House from Himachal Pradesh in 2016.