Members of the Lok Sabha discussed air, water, plastic pollution along with climate change on Friday. Air pollution in Delhi was discussed in both the Houses on Thursday.
Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said that the country had decided to be part of the solution to climate change. He claimed New Delhi will take less time than Beijing to improve its air quality.
The Rajya Sabha was adjourned till 11 am on Monday. In Friday’s session, legislators from the Opposition parties protested against the matter of electoral bonds, and the Bharatiya Janata Party and Aam Aadmi Party members debated water pollution in Delhi.
Here are updates from the day:
7.54 pm: Revolutionary Socialist Party MP NK Premachandra says not to vote is also a democratic right. He said voters should be encouraged to take part in the election process in large numbers.
Trinamool Congress leader Saugata Roy calls for the elimination of electronic voting machines, reports PTI.
7.51 pm: “I am not in favour of compulsory voting,” BJP leader Satyapal Singh says, according to PTI.
7.51 pm: Lok Sabha MPs express differing views on a private member’s bill on compulsory voting. The Lower House took up the Compulsory Voting Bill, 2019, moved by BJP’s Janardhan Singh Srigriwal in July.
In a March 2015 report on electoral reforms, the Law Commission had opposed to the concept of compulsory voting, saying its implementation not practical.
7.44 pm: Home Minister Amit Shah chairs a meeting on implementation of the Cabinet’s decison to import 1.2 lakh tonnes of onion, reports ANI.
7.38 pm: Earlier in the day, the Ministry of Railways told the Parliament that there is a proposal to outsource commercial and onboard services of certain trains, but no plans to implement large-scale privatisation, News18 reports.
5.24 pm: Lok Sabha discusses Private Members’ Bills.
5.13 pm: Rajya Sabha adjourned till 11 am on Monday.
5.11 pm: In the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Agriculture Kailash Choudhary alleges it may be the Delhi government’s failure to curb air pollution. “There are many reasons for rise in pollution,” he says, according to News18. “However, the state government is creating hype for political reasons.”
5.02 pm: Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla asks Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani to come up with a diet chart for pregnant women to circulate in the constituencies of the legislators, reports PTI. “We should make a collective effort to end malnutrition in the country,” he says. “If we can create a mass movement to end malnutrition in the country...I hope it will be eradicated by the last session of this (17th) Lok Sabha.”
5 pm: Javadekar says finding an alternative to plastic is a “challenging task”. “Due to its durability, strength, inert behaviour and low cost, plastic emerged as one of the most reliable packaging material for the industries,” he says. “As an outcome, the increase in demand for plastic has indirectly resulted into the challenge of plastic waste management.”
3.10 pm: Union Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal says Lok Sabha will take up the proposed amendment to the Special Protection Group Act next week, reports PTI. This comes amid the controversy over the removal of Special Protection Group cover for the Gandhi family.
2.48 pm: Javadekar says during the debate that the government will take less time than Beijing to reduce air pollution, News18 reports.
1.35 pm: Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar responds to questions raised in the Lok Sabha regarding air pollution, News 18 reports.
12.28 pm: Ruckus erupts in Lok Sabha as BJP’s Locket Chatterjee claims a breakdown in law and order in West Bengal, reports News18. Referring to the death of a BJP worker last week, Chatterjee demands a probe into the incident.
12.22 pm: Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu intervenes and appeals to all not to create a ruckus. “Please do not shout and put pressure on your lungs, anyway it is happening due to air here,” he says, according to The Indian Express.
12.20 pm: Rajya Sabha witnesses chaotic scenes as BJP MP Vijay Goel raises the matter of water pollution in Delhi, reports News18. A Bureau of Indian Standards study found Delhi’s water to be the most unsafe among 21 major Indian cities. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had on Monday called the study “false and politically motivated”.
11.19 am: Congress MPs stage protest outside Parliament to demand transparency in electoral bonds scheme.
11.13 am: Congress gives “Suspension of Business Notice” in Rajya Sabha over electoral bonds, reports ANI.
11.06 am: Revolutionary Socialist Party gives adjournment motion notice in Lok Sabha over “criminal negligence of the teaching faculty and doctors of Wayanad”, reports ANI. A nine-year-old girl died after a snake bit her inside her school’s classroom in Sulthan Bathery town of Wayanad district of Kerala on Wednesday. The girl’s classmates alleged that although teachers were alerted about the bite, they dismissed it as a casual wound.
11.01 am: Trinamool Congress gives adjournment notice in Lok Sabha over “continued shutdown in Srinagar”, reports ANI.
9.41 am: Congress leader Digvijaya Singh and Communist Party of India (Marxist) legislator KK Ragesh give zero-hour notice in Rajya Sabha over JNU fee hike, according to ANI.
9.30 am: On Thursday, the Lok Sabha witnessed stormy scenes as the Congress protested against issuance of electoral bonds and privatisation of public sector units, including Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited. The Congress alleged that these moves were “scams”.
9.15 am: The Centre on Thursday referred the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2019, to a Select Committee of the Rajya Sabha. The Bill provides for a ban on commercial surrogacy, and was passed by the Lok Sabha in the monsoon session.