The short 13-day winter session of the Parliament concluded yesterday, being the shortest winter session since 2009, but despite limited time, the session turned out to be fruitful with 10 Bills being passed by both the Houses.
There were a lot of disruptions and quite waste of time in the Parliament’s winter session this year, but still the lawmakers of both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha managed to pass 10 Bills including one to bar wilful defaulters from bidding for stressed assets going under the hammer with the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code. At the beginning of the session, 25 Bills were listed for consideration and passing – among which, 14 were listed for introduction and 6 were passed by at least one house. So overall, the Lok Sabha worked for 78% of its scheduled time and the Rajya Sabha worked for 54% of its scheduled time; most of the time was lost during disruptions that were caused by the passing of the triple talaq Bill, and the Bhima-Koregaon violence in Maharashtra.
Other key Bills that were passed includes the Goods and Services Tax (Compensation to States) Amendment Bill, 2017, to increase the cap on cess rates on motor vehicles, Companies (Amendment) Bill, the Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance (FRDI) Bill. All-in-all, a total of 10 Bills were passed by both the Houses in 13-days, which is quite speedy and fruitful. Besides these 10 Bills, two appropriation Bills on the supplementary demands for grants were approved by both Houses. But there were some that were missed too.
Like the Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Bill, 2013, which makes giving bribes an offence and a modification in definition of taking bribe; the Triple Talaq Bill which is canvased as “historic” by the government and was introduced, heard and passed in a single day by Lok Sabha, but was held back at Rajya Sabha. The bill has now been pushed back to budget session and will be introduced again. Apart from that, the Code on Wages, 2017 bill is awaiting examination from the parliamentary standing committee and will be heard in the first week of Budget session, 2018. A rather fruitful session for such short time.