The Monsoon Session of Parliament has begun from today (July 19, 2021) and is likely to witness a confrontation between the government and the Opposition over raging issues of the COVID-19 pandemic, farmers’ protest, fuel prices hike and vaccination strategy.
On the other hand, social media was abuzz throughout Sunday with speculation about the worldwide release of Pegasus report which claimed that telephones of India’s top Ministers, Supreme Court judges, journalists and others were tapped. However, the government dismissed allegations of any kind of surveillance on its part on specific people, saying it "has no concrete basis or truth associated with it whatsoever".
"Our national security is under threat. I will definitely raise this issue (in the house)," Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury was quoted saying by news agency ANI this morning.
PM Modi, in his traditional remarks before the start of the session, urged the opposition to ask tough questions but to allow government to answer them in the House. Introducing the newly inducted ministers to the house, PM Modi had to abandon the exercise midway amid slogan shouting against price rise and farmer protests by the opposition. "Perhaps some people are not happy if country's women, OBCs, farmers' sons become Ministers. That is why they don't even allow their introduction," said the Prime Minister.
Criticising the opposition move, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said such a thing was happening for the first time in his 24 years of parliamentary career. "The strength of Parliament is in maintaining healthy traditions. Both Opposition and Treasury should maintain healthy traditions. Even if one or 50 new ministers are inducted, the whole House listens to their introduction by the Prime Minister with decorum... This is sad, unfortunate and an unhealthy approach," said Mr. Singh. "We condemn the manner in which Opposition MPs behaved on the first day of the session today. We saw a very unfortunate situation, both in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. In Rajya Sabha, the address of the Chairman was interrupted too," said Piyush Goyal referring to the protests. Subsequently, both the houses were adjourned till afternoon.
PM Modi, addressing mediapersons outside Parliament, said the government wants pandemic to be discussed in the house on priority, adding that people who take the Covid vaccine become ''Baahubali'' in the fight against the disease. "The vaccine is given in ''baahu'' (arms), those who take the jab become ''Baahubali''
The Monsoon session of the Parliament 2021 will continue till August 13.