The Monsoon session 2020 of Parliament is set to commence today. The fourth session of 17th Lok Sabha and 252nd session of Rajya Sabha is scheduled to be held today and subject to exigencies of government business, may conclude on October 1.
According to a press release from the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs, the session will provide a total of 18 sittings spread over a period of 18 days (all the days including Saturdays and Sundays of the ensuing session will be working days) and a total of 47 items have been identified for being taken up during the Monsoon Session 2020. (These include 45 Bills and two financial items).
This will be the first Parliament session being held amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore all safety measures have been taken to conduct the session as per guidelines issued for COVID-19.
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Sunday has sent a safety COVID-19 kit along with a letter to all the parliamentarians amid the pandemic.
“As you are aware, the Monsoon Session of Parliament is commencing on 14 September 2020 and will last up to October 1 without any holiday in between. This session is being held in extraordinary circumstances. While discharging our Constitutional responsibilities, we also have to comply with all the Covid-19 related guidelines,” Birla stated in the letter to parliamentarians.
The Speaker said that Lok Sabha Secretariat has made all the arrangements for members’ safety and convenience to enable them to participate in the deliberations of the House without any apprehension.
On the other hand, MPs will be given packed food in the canteen during the Monsoon session. This is among the several measures that are being taken in this session in the wake of the coronavirus.
In this context, a menu has been issued from the canteen of the Parliament. As per the menu, there will be different types of packed breakfast in the canteen for the MPs.At the same time, they will be able to get 4 categories of packed lunch, which include vegetarian food, South Indian, non-vegetarian, and combo meal. In addition, hygiene will be taken care of in the canteen.
There will be a four-hour session for each House each day (9 am to 1 pm for Rajya Sabha and 3 pm to 7 pm for Lok Sabha. But on the first day, only i.e. on September 14, of the Lok Sabha will meet in the morning session.
The session will see other measures like seating MPs in a staggered way in chambers of both Houses, as well as galleries to maintain physical distancing norms, the introduction of mobile app for registering of MPs’ attendance and seats separated with poly-carbon sheets in the House.
The Zero Hour will be there and the un-starred questions will be laid on the table.
The total 11 Bills to replace ordinances are as follows: (i)The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020. (ii) The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Prices Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020.(iii) The Homoeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2020. (iv) The Indian Medicine Central Council (Amendment) Bill, 2020. (v) The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020.(vi) The Insolvency & Bankruptcy (Second) Amendment Bill, 2020 ( vii) The Banking Regulation (Amendment) Bill, 2020. (viii) The Taxation and Other Laws (Relaxation of Certain Provisions) Bill, 2020 (ix)The Epidemic Diseases (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (x) The Salary and Allowances of Ministers (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (xi) The Salary, Allowances and Pension of Members of Parliament (Amendment) Bill, 2020 are required to be passed during the ensuing Monsoon Session.