The 2022 Winter Session of parliament was initially scheduled to be held until 29 December 2022. However, the session was adjourned sine die 6 days ahead of schedule on 23 December 2022. Here is a short review on what happened in the 13 sittings.
The 2022 Winter Session of parliament was initially scheduled to be held until 29 December 2022. However, the session was adjourned sine die 6 days ahead of schedule on 23 December 2022. This decision was taken in the Business Advisory Committee of both houses in cognizance of Christmas/Yearend celebrations, also noting that the essential Government Business was concluded in these sittings. There were a total of 13 sittings in this Session against the earlier planned 17 sittings.
9 Bills Introduced during the Winter session
A total of 9 new bills were introduced in the Lok Sabha during this session. Among the new bills introduced were 2 Appropriation Bills. The first Batch of Supplementary Demands for Grants for 2022-23 and Demands for Excess Grant for 2019-20 was discussed and voted on. The Appropriation Bills were passed by Lok Sabha on 14 December 2022 after a debate of 11 Hours. Rajya Sabha debated on these bills for about 9 hours and returned them on 21 December 2022.
Among the 9 Bills introduced in the winter session, 4 bills are relating to the 2nd, 3rd, 4th & 5th Amendments to The Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order Bill. Apart from these 4 bills and the 2 Appropriation bills, the other new bills include – The Repealing and Amending Bill, The Multi-State Co-operative Societies (Amendment) Bill, 2022 and The Jan Vishwas (Amendment of Provisions) Bill, 2022. The latter two bills were referred to the Joint Committees of both Houses of Parliament after the motions were adopted in the respective houses.
Discussions on a few of the pending bills from the earlier sessions were also conducted. Lok Sabha passed 7 bills while 9 bills were passed in Rajya Sabha. A total of 9 bills were passed by both the houses during the Winter session of 2022. Apart from the Appropriation Bills and the Amendment Bills to The Constitution (Scheduled Tribes) Order, Lok Sabha also passed The Maritime Anti-Piracy Bill, 2022. This bill was also passed in Rajya Sabha.
Rajya Sabha also passed The Wild Life (Protection) Amendment Bill, 2022, The Energy Conservation (Amendment), Bill, 2022 and The New Delhi Arbitration Centre (Amendment Bill), 2022, which were passed in Lok Sabha during the Monsoon session, 2022.
Lok Sabha met for nearly 69 Hours across 13 sittings
As indicated earlier, Lok Sabha had a total of 13 sittings during this session. This is the second least number of sittings in a session during the current Lok Sabha term so far. The 4th session of the current Lok Sabha also had only 10 sittings. The Provisional Overview of the 10th Sitting of the current 17th Lok Sabha provides some key insights.
- Across these 13 sittings, Lok Sabha was in session for a total of 68 hours and 42 minutes. This is better than 3 other sessions of the current term.
- The total time lost due to interruptions and forced adjournments was 2 hours 26 minutes. This is the least time lost with the exception of 1st & 5th sessions, in which there was no time lost.
- A total of 59 Private member bills were introduced in this session of Lok Sabha of which none of them were passed.
- 374 matters of urgent public importance were raised during this session, while 298 matters were raised under Rule 377.
- A total of 240 Starred questions and 2760 Unstarred questions were admitted during the 10th session of Lok Sabha. It is the lowest number of Starred questions admitted in a session during the current term of Lok Sabha.
- Among the Starred questions, 56 questions were answered orally in the house.
- A total of 43 statements were given by Ministers in the session.
- 36 reports of various Parliamentary committees were presented.
A total of 15 hours were spent in Lok Sabha for Two Short duration discussions under Rule 193. The topics for these two discussions were, ‘The problem of drug abuse in the Country and steps taken by the Government thereon’ and ‘The need to promote sports in India and steps taken by the Government’. A total of 119 members across parties participated in these two discussions.
In Rajya Sabha, one Short Duration Discussion under Rule 176 was held. 17 members discussed the topic, ‘Serious Effects of Global Warming and the need for remedial steps to tackle it’ for around 3 hours.
As per the Press release by the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs, the productivity of Lok Sabha was approximately 97% and in the case of Rajya Sabha, it was approximately 103%.
Few Notable Questions and Responses
The review of the proceedings up to 21 December 2022 can be read here and here. In Lok Sabha, the government responded to some questions on 22 December 2022. These questions majorly belong to the Ministries of – Road transport, MSME, Civil Aviation, New and Renewable Energy, Jal Shakti, Minority Affairs, etc. among others.
Responding to a question on the Road accidents on National Highways, the Government updated that a sanction of Rs.1200 crores was provided to states for Road Safety works. Of these, the greatest amount was to Karnataka around Rs.140 crores. Ministry of Minority Affairs provided updates on the extant of scholarships provided to Minority students. In one of the responses, the Ministry of Civil Aviation furnished details of the Revenues and Expenditures of the Airport Authority of India, along with trends relating to passenger traffic in recent years. Ministry of Railways provided details on the extent of land encroachment across different Railway zones.
Responses were also provided by the government in Rajya Sabha on both the 22 & 23 of December. On 22 December 2022, Committee on Government Assurances submitted Reports on the Dropping of Assurances. Among other Standing Committee reports, the report “Anti-Competitive Practices by Big-Tech Companies”, was submitted by the Standing Committee on Finance, on 22 December 2022.