Dissent With Dignity In The Parliament: President Ram Nath Kovind

President Ram Nath Kovind said that the role of Parliament and legislatures in democracy was to discuss, debate and decide.

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Dissent With Dignity In The Parliament: President Ram Nath Kovind

President Ram Nath Kovind said the debates should be orderly in Parliament


New Delhi: 

President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday asked MPs and MLAs to maintain decorum while expressing dissent during discussion or debate in Parliament and state legislatures.

Addressing an event in New Delhi, he said for the success of parliamentary democracy, it was necessary that all members of Parliament respect each others' views and maintain their dignity.

The president pointed out that Parliament's proceedings were broadcast live.

"The public expects discussions on its problems and plans for development of the country. It is Parliament's responsibility to make efforts towards fulfilling the hopes and aspirations of our citizens," he said.

President Kovind said that the role of Parliament and legislatures in democracy was to discuss, debate and decide.

"Occasionally, this process may entail an element of dissent. But in expression of dissent, MLAs and MPs have to maintain decorum. Due to the combination of these five Ds -- discussion, debate, dissent, decorum and decision, the biggest D -- democracy is strengthened," he said, addressing the commemoration of the 3rd anniversary of the Speaker's Research Initiative (SRI) of the Lok Sabha here.

The brainchild of Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, SRI was inaugurated on 23 July 2015 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

President Kovind said the debates should be orderly in Parliament and there should be a sense of dignity in dissent.

The president said that to ensure the majesty of democracy and the functioning of the legislature, it was not just important to take decisions.

"It is absolutely critical to take well considered decisions. This is where the role of research and knowledge comes in. The SRI initiative is a great help in this regard," he said.

Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said the inspiration behind setting up of the SRI came from the presence of more than 300 new members in the Sixteenth Lok Sabha.

Observing that members of Parliament play multifarious roles to harmonise their duties at different levels, she said the the complexity of issues in the era of globalisation had made the work of legislators increasingly difficult and complex.

"The need of the hour in such a scenario is super-specialisation and informed decision making by lawmakers. Keeping in view these requirements, SRI has engaged eminent experts from various fields across the country to share their knowledge with members," she said.

The SRI seeks to assist members of Parliament in playing a more effective role in legislation, parliamentary debates, and critical knowledge on matters of national and international importance.

It organises workshops and group discussions on important issues where eminent experts and members of Parliament interact with each other for effective knowledge sharing, information dissemination and capacity building.



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