National-Level Discussion Needed To Check Rising Tendency Of Indiscipline In Legislature: Om Birla

Under his chairmanship, the All India Presiding Officers' Conference passed a resolution stating there should be no disruption during the Presidential address and the motion of thanks on it.

Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla addresses a function to commemorate the ‘Samvidhan Divas’, at Parliament, in New Delhi, Friday, Nov. 26, 2021. President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and PM Narendra Modi are also seen. (Image: PTI)

Shimla: Days before the Winter Session of Parliament, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Thursday said a national-level discussion should be held with political parties to inculcate self-discipline among legislators and check the “rising tendency” of indiscipline and disruption in the Houses.

Under his chairmanship, the All India Presiding Officers’ Conference passed a resolution stating there should be no disruption during the Presidential address and the motion of thanks on it.

Addressing the conference, Birla said legislatures should be centres of solving common man’s problems and fulfilling their needs through a comprehensive discussion and dialogue without disruptions.

“We have to stop the increasing tendency of indiscipline, disruption and uproar in the legislatures. For this, we will hold discussions with the leaders of all political parties so that the proceedings of the House are carried out smoothly,” he said.

The Lok Sabha speaker said a national-level discussion should be held for ensuring the smooth functioning of the legislative bodies in the country.

Sharing his vision for legislative bodies, Birla said the legislatures will act as pillars of accountability towards the citizens and stressed on making these institutions more empowered, capable, aware and transparent.

“We should try to make a definite action plan to increase the number of meetings of the legislatures providing maximum time and opportunities to the honourable members so that the people’s representatives can discuss the major issues of their state and country extensively,” he said.

Birla told the presiding officers from state legislative bodies that the rules and procedures of all the legislatures should be the same. “We have to establish good traditions and conventions inside the legislatures, which will give dignity to our Houses and increase their prestige.”

In the context of technological evolution, he stressed the need for equipping the legislatures with modern technology.

“We will prepare ‘One Nation One Legislative Platform’ in due course so that all legislatures can make available their current and old debates and other resources at one place with collective effort,” the Lok Sabha speaker said.

About parliamentary committees, Birla said they act as mini parliaments.

“The workings of our parliamentary committees also need to be drastically changed in accordance to the present times. There should be a wider discussion on this subject as well.

“We need to strengthen the parliamentary committees so that they can ensure the accountability of the executive by making government policies and programmes more effective through their constructive suggestions,” he said.

Emphasising the need for presiding officers evaluate the work done by the parliamentary committees once a year, Birla said the panels should also be made more accountable to the public.

A presiding officer should give necessary suggestions to the committee, if necessary, so that the panel stays accountable and disposes of pending matters in a time-bound manner, he added.