The winter session of Parliament is to begin today, shadowing the Assembly elections in Gujarat and the Parliament will be meeting from December 15, that is today, to January 5. This short winter session is expected to be interesting as few important bills are set to be passed.
With the end of elections in to states, the opposition is expected to target NDA on economic issues like demonetisation, NPAs of banks and GST as well as agrarian stress and the Rafale deal. Besides that, the Congress will also ask for an apology from the Prime Minister for allegations on former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that he concerned Pakistan officials to influence Gujarat elections. All these disruptions will affect the essence of Parliament, when all parties would work together, regardless of their political differences.
The budget will be on table on February 1 and many important bills are still pending, with a short session on hand. The agenda for legislation includes 25 pending bills consideration and passing as well as 14 new bills that are yet to be introduced, considered and passed. Some of the important bills include the OBC Commission bill, Triple Talaq bill, the GST Ordinance bill, Surrogacy bill, Transgender protection rights bill, Road safety bill, Prevention of Corruption bill, Insolvency and Bankruptcy bill. With a bundle of agrarian crisis and social problems across the country, the parties must minimise debates to avoid disruptions and pass bills to make them law – as soon as possible.
While the Opposition is expected to rain allegations and issues as it is the first session for Congress under the presidency of Rahul Gandhi; whilst, BJP too is likely to be extremely aggressive with party chief Amit Shah at the helm of the Rajya Sabha. Conditions in the Parliament will get highly unfavourable if BJP wins the elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh as that will give a swing to the already-united Opposition on issues like ineffectiveness of demonetisation and unorganised implementation of GST. With united opposition, bills may be slewed and amended off, or not even reach the consideration stage.