Rajya Sabha has been adjourned sine dine. The session was scheduled to go on till October 1 but was cut short in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic. This is now the third shortest in terms of total sittings since the Rajya Sabha came into existence in 1952. With the passage of 25 bills and introduction of six others, Rajya Sabha records showed 100% productivity during the monsoon session that was held amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Chairperson M Venkaiah Naidu said the session was concluded ahead of time as the Coronavirus pandemic continued to challenge humankind nine months after its outbreak.He said Rajya Sabha consistently recorded its highest productivity in the last four sessions and it was “praiseworthy”. In his closing remarks, Naidu said a record amount of time (about 58% of the number of business hours) was spent on bills during the session, as against an average of 28% over the years.More allotment of time to bills, he said, justified the purpose of this session in which the Question Hour was dispensed with.Naidu said the session had brought forward some concerns, like the notice for the deputy chairman’s removal.“It is our collective responsibility to avert such an unpleasant turn of events. The suspension of members is unpalatable but forced,” he said, adding that while protesting was the Opposition’s right, it was the manner of protest that needed attention.
Opposition parties had protested the doing away of the Question Hour, pointing out that it infringed upon their right to seek answers from the government. The session was unprecedented in many ways.For the first time, the two houses sat spread out between the two chambers and the visitors' gallery. While Rajya Sabha sat for four hours in the morning, the Lok Sabha in the afternoon with a two-hour break.