Winter session of Parliament to begin on stormy note

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Winter session of Parliament to begin on stormy note
Winter session of Parliament to begin on stormy note

New Delhi : The winter session of Parliament beginning on Friday is likely to be stormy with the opposition parties all set to corner the government over a range of issues like the Rafale deal, the adverse impact of GST and demonetisation on the economy, the plight of farmers and religious intolerance.

The session, which was delayed due to the Gujarat Assembly polls, is also likely to be hit by the poll outcome along with that of Himachal Pradesh. 

If the BJP retains Gujarat and snatches Himachal Pradesh from Congress, the grand old party under its new President Rahul Gandhi would find it difficult to corner the government over the issues they raised during the polls.

But if the Congress wins Gujarat, even if it loses Himachal Pradesh, the opposition party would take on the government over the issues that have raised the political temperature.

The winter session, which lasts about a month, is normally called in the last week of November and concludes days before Christmas.

This year, Parliament is meeting from December 15 to January 5 -- with December 25 and 26 being declared holidays on account of Christmas.

Seventeen Opposition parties led by Congress, which have joined hands to put up a united fight against the ruling NDA, would meet here on Thursday at Parliament House to chalk out the strategy to corner the government.

TMC leader Saugata Roy told IANS: "Bad impact of GST and demonetisation on economy, religious intolerance, killing of a West Bengal labourer in Rajasthan will be the major issues which we will raise in Parliament."

He said the opposition parties would coordinate over the issues to be raised and would definitely take a call on the issues pertaining to corruption.

The Opposition parties that include the Congress, CPI-M, Trinamool Congress, Samajwadi Party, Nationalist Congress Party, BSP, the Rashtriya Janata Dal and DMK among others, have already clarified that they will have floor coordination in Parliament to corner the government.

Congress leader K. C. Venugopal said that it would raise the issues like impact of GST and demonetisation, Rafale deal, linking of Aadhaar with PAN and other documents. 

CPI leader D Raja said: "Damage caused due to cyclone Ockhi, farmers distress, increasing hate crimes, inflation, GST and fallout of demonetisation" would be raised.

The government has convened an all party meet to discuss the agenda of the session. Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan will meet the leaders from all parties on Thursday evening over dinner on the eve of the session.

A bill to provide Muslim women the right to seek maintenance from the ex-spouse after divorce and another aimed to end discrimination against transgenders, among other proposed legislations, are listed for taking up during Parliament's winter session starting on Friday.

At least 14 new bills are set to be introduced during the session, according to a list compiled by think tank PRS Legislative Research.