The Budget Session, 2021 of Parliament, which commenced on Friday, 29th January 2021, has been adjourned sine die today.
In between, Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha adjourned for recess on Friday, the 12th February 2021 and Saturday, the 13th February 2021 respectively and reassembled on Monday, the 8th March 2021 to enable Departmentally related Standing Committees to examine and report on the Demands for Grants relating to various Ministries/Departments.
Speaking about the Budget Session, Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Prahlad Joshi stated that during the entire Budget Session, 2021 there were 24 sittings of Lok Sabha and 23 sittings of Rajya Sabha. The first part of the Budget Session yielded a total of 12 sittings of Lok Sabha and 11 sittings of Rajya Sabha. There were 12 sittings of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha respectively in the second part of the session.
The Session, which was originally scheduled to have sittings till 8th April 2021, was curtailed due to the demand of Leaders of various political parties in both the Houses so that Members could participate in the election process in certain States/UTs.
Presentation of Union Budget:
The Union Budget for 2021- 22 was presented on Monday, the 1st of February, 2021. General Discussion on the Union Budget was held in both Houses in the first part of this Session.
In Lok Sabha, Demands for Grants relating to Ministries of Railways, Education and Health and Family Welfare were discussed and adopted individually. Thereafter, the rest of the Demands for Grants of the Ministries/Departments were put to the vote of the House on Wednesday, the 17th March 2021. The related Appropriation Bill was also introduced, considered and passed by Lok Sabha on 17th March 2021.
Appropriation Bills relating to Supplementary Demands for Grants for the year 2020-21; Demands for Grants for the year 2021-22 and Supplementary Demands for Grants for the year 2020-21 in respect of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Supplementary Demands for Grants for the year 2020-21 and Demands for Grants (Vote on Account) for the year 2021-22 for the Union Territory of Puducherry after their adoption were also introduced, considered and passed on 18th of March 2021 in the Lok Sabha.
Lok Sabha passed the Finance Bill, 2021 on 23rd March 2021. Rajya Sabha also returned all the Appropriation Bills on 23rd March 2021, and the Finance Bill, 2021 on 24th March 2021. The entire Financial Business was completed in the Houses of Parliament before 31st March 2021.
Bills passed in the session:
During this Session, a total of 20 Bills (17 in Lok Sabha and 03 in Rajya Sabha) were introduced. 18 Bills were passed by Lok Sabha and 19 Bills were passed by Rajya Sabha. The total number of Bills passed by both Houses of Parliament is 18.
Some important Bills, passed by Houses of Parliament are as under:-
Economic sector/ease of doing business measures
The Mines and Minerals (Developments and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2021 proposes to develop the mining sector to its full potential for faster economic growth.
The Insurance (Amendment) Bill, 2021 aims to achieve the objective of the Government's FDI Policy by raising the limit of foreign investment in Indian insurance companies from the existing 49 per cent to 74 per cent and to allow foreign ownership and control with safeguards.
The Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Bill, 2021 addresses the concerns raised by stakeholders after the enactment of the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2019.
The National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development Bill, 2021 proposes to establish the National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development to support the development of long-term non-recourse infrastructure financing in India.
The Major Port Authorities Bill, 2021 aims to provide greater autonomy, flexibility to the Major Ports and to professionalise their governance by repealing the Major Port Trusts Act, 1963.
The Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Bill, 2021 increases the upper gestational limit for termination of pregnancy and to strengthen access of woman to comprehensive abortion care with compromising the service and quality of safe abortion.
The National Commission for Allied and Healthcare Professions Bill, 2021 seeks to provide for regulation and maintenance of standards of education and services by allied and healthcare professionals, assessment of institutions, maintenance of a Central Register and State Register and creation of a system to improve access, research and development and adoption of latest scientific advancement and connected.
Social justice reforms
The Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order (Amendment) Bill, 2021 amends the Constitution (Scheduled Castes) Order, 1950 in respect of the State of Tamil Nadu.
The National Capital Territory of Delhi Laws (Special Provisions) Second (Amendment) Bill, 2021 will extend the Act, 2011 for a further period of three years from 1st January 2021 to 31st December 2023.
The Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2021 will promote harmonious relations between the legislature and the executive of National Capital Territory of Delhi.
Short Duration Discussion under Rule 193 in Lok Sabha was held on 'Empowerment of Women' which remained inconclusive.
Mr Prahlad Joshi informed that the productivity for the complete Budget Session, 2021 of Lok Sabha was approximately 114 per cent and that of Rajya Sabha was 90 per cent.