NDA managers reach out to Opposition ahead of inaugural Lok Sabha session

The government has begun reaching out to the opposition parties to chalk out the agenda for Lok Sabha’s first session from June 17 to July 27, according to people aware of the developments.

It also plans to hold the first all-party meeting following Bharatiya Janata Party’s return to power hours before the session starts.

Leaders of the opposition parties said parliamentary affairs minister Prahlad Joshi and his deputy, Arjun Ram Meghwal, have been calling them.

A Trinamool Congress leader, which has 22 seats in Lok Sabha, said Meghwal called the party’s chief whip, Kalyan Banerjee, to know about their floor leader in Parliament. Similarly, the government has reached out Ghulam Nabi Azad as the Congress is yet to decide who its Lok Sabha floor leader would be.

Opposition leaders said despite getting 358 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha, the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) still needs to reach out to them given a long list of pending bills, including that involving criminalisation of the practice of instant divorce among a section of Muslims.

The government needs legislative support as it issued 10 ordinances after Parliament’s last session in February.

“All these are contentious bills and the NDA knows very well that they might pass them in the Lok Sabha, but would need our support to push them in the Upper House,” said a Congress leader on condition of anonymity.

A meeting of floor leaders on June 17 has been convened about bills the government wants to push in this session and the issues the Opposition would like to raise.

The NDA floor leaders are also trying to find out who the floor leaders of the different parties are to make it easier for them to communicate and interact.

First Published:
Jun 07, 2019 07:37 IST

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