(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
August 22, 2010
THE WEEK IN PARLIAMENT
issue of railway minister Ms Mamata Banerjee’s rally with the help of
Maoists’ frontal organisation, at Lalgarh in
the issue in Lok Sabha, amidst interruptions, A Sampath said the prime
had dubbed Naxalism as the biggest threat to the nation. The Maoists
a war against the people. In
In Rajya Sabha, Prasanta Chatterjee, CPI(M), reminded how Ms Banerjee has been demanding the withdrawal of joint police action from Lalgarh and other areas, to help the Maoists, many of whom are on the “wanted” list on various charges. He said the Lalgarh rally was nothing but a move to rehabilitate the banned outfits politically, and demanded why the union government allowed a cabinet minister to share a platform with the Maoists.
Next Day, on Tuesday, Lok Sabha deputy speaker allowed a TMC member to speak on their meeting at Lalgarh. As usual, he resorted to jugglery and, to the amusement of other members, he said they to condemn murder. From the CPI(M) side, Bangsa Gopal Chowdhury highlighted their onslaughts on the people and pointed out that the TMC rally was led by wanted Maoist leaders including two accused of the Gnaneswari Express accident. This is the reality of their democratic credentials, he said. BJP member Gopinath Munde too described as “shameful” the minister’s association with the Maoists. He sought to know why the prime minister was silent on it. In Rajya Sabha, BJP leader Arun Jaitley said the prime minister’s silence could at times be a weapon of convenience, but a conspiracy of silence could not be allowed.
Rajya Sabha, Brinda Karat, CPI(M), drew attention to the sufferings of
people because of total blockade by NSCN and other organisations. The
Manipur have some genuine concerns, which have to be addressed and a
solution found. She said the hospitals there do not have even oxygen
petrol is very costly; heavy taxes are being charged from truckers.
non-availability of commodities, their prices are ten times the prices
we pay in
the discussion on
this occasion, Acharia said the
her hard-hitting speech in Rajya Sabha, Brinda Karat sharply flayed the
for its failure to punish the culprits. The CBI charge sheet made it
the entire security mechanism was closed that night. It was a manmade
But the call of
speaker said even today large quantities of chemicals are present in
the water at
Joining the Lok Sabha discussion on the delay in preparation for Commonwealth Games (CWG), Bangsagopal Chowdhury demanded a thorough probe into the charges of corruption. He said the CAG report has already come to the prime minister and a joint parliamentary committee must thoroughly probe the issue. In the run-up to these games, numerous contract workers have died, and as many as one lakh people have been dislocated. What the government was going to do about this, he asked. A lot of sweat and blood of the workers has been lost to these games. The government left them helpless before labour law violations; nor do these labourers get more than Rs 100 a day. The government has also to respond to the sub-standard work carried out for the games as ineligible agencies were assigned contracts. This should be probed by a JPC.
On August 10, CPI(M) members in Lok Sabha walked out expressing dissatisfaction over the minister’s reply on the issue.
In Rajya Sabha, Tapan Sen expressed concern over the increasing deaths of construction workers, particularly at the CWG sites. He said as per official records, CWG sites have witnessed 42 deaths and Metro sites 16 deaths in the last one year, in a bid to expedite the work. The actual number, 150 to 200, is far more than the official figures. There is complete absence of labour law enforcement machinery. The workers, who are from other states, have been reduced to the bonded labour status. No union is allowed to exist. Labour department officials ignore their duties. Many deaths go unrecorded and uncompensated. Skilled workers are getting Rs 134 and unskilled workers 85 to 90 a day.
In the same house, Moinul Hassan raised the issue of non-implementation of Justice Ranganath Misra commission recommendations. He said one of the terms of reference of this National Commission for Religious and Linguistic Minorities was to recommend measures for welfare of the socially and economically backward sections among religious and linguistic minorities, including reservation in education and government jobs. The commission placed its report last year, proposing 15 per cent reservation in education and jobs for Muslims and others, but there was no action. Moinul urged the government to announce reservation for Muslims and other minorities as proposed.
Sabha has passed the State Bank of
Parliament had passed the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill 2009. Jharna Das Baidya participated in the discussion in Rajya Sabha and P R Natarajan in Lok Sabha. They supported the bill as it seeks to impose quantitative restrictions (QRs), and recalled how the withdrawal of QRs has created a crisis for our agro industries. However, the free trade agreement with European Union, which the government is negotiating secretly, will adversely affect Indian agriculture and manufacturing, leading to further job-losses and market shrinkage. The government is even prepared to rewrite the patent laws. Accepting product patents for drugs and pharmaceuticals under the TRIPS has already restricted the people’s access to cheap medicines. The provision for dispensing with requirement of obtaining import-export licenses needs to be examined, and the list of items for import under license must increase. The CPI(M) members also demanded a White Paper on WTO’s impact on Indian peasantry.
Rajya Sabha, P Rajeeve raised the demand for approval and commissioning
Kochi Metro project. He said in
had passed the Jharkhand budget. In the discussion in Rajya Sabha,
said Jharkhand is a resource rich state; yet one of the poorest states
country due to misrule by the successive Congress and BJP governments.