Onus Of Running Parliament Smoothly On Govt As Well: Shashi Tharoor

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Onus Of Running Parliament Smoothly On Govt As Well: Shashi Tharoor

File Photo of Congress leader Shashi Tharoor.


New Delhi:  Stating that Congress cannot be blamed for the logjam in Parliament, party leader Shashi Tharoor on Wednesday said the onus of ensuring its smooth functioning was "as much" on the government as he asked the Narendra Modi dispensation to take the party's concerns "very seriously".

Speaking to reporters in New Delhi, Mr Tharoor said there will be constructive response from Opposition parties only if the government reached out to them in a "constructive way".

At a time when Congress is up in arms against the government, Mr Tharoor will on Friday introduce three private members bills seeking to amend Article 377 to de-criminalise consensual sex between consenting adults, offering rights to foreign nationals seeking asylum in India and amending Section 124A of IPC to ensure that the sedition term is not misused.

"The political responsibility of disruption should not be placed only on the opposition party or parties that are disrupting. The political responsibility goes as much to the government, its Parliamentary management and the overall attitude of the government to the opposition parties and the nation," he said.

"My own view very much is that many of the concerns that the Congress party has been articulating inside and outside the Parliament, including those made today in the meeting with the President, should be taken very seriously by the ruling party," the Congress leader added.

Defending Congress, the Parliamentarian said the party believed in debates and has "more talented" debaters than the government has on the treasury benches.

He also reminded that the first session after the NDA government came into being had seen 105 per cent business.

"So, what the Congress party has been saying, and I speak privately, I am not a spokesperson of the party... The Congress party has been saying understandably is that in our country there is an onus in the Parliamentary system on the government to make the Parliament run.

"And that means reaching out to the opposition in a constructive way. And when they do so, there will be constructive response," he said.

On him presenting the bills at a time when the Congress is being accused of disruptions, Mr Tharoor said him introducing the bills in private capacity was very much in sync with his party's stand.

"Even though my party's concerns which we have been articulating inside and outside the House are well known... Last Friday afternoon, the party did not object to the discussion on private member bills going ahead.

"And in fact, some Congress members had introduced private members bills last time. Therefore, I do not believe that I have been out of sync," he added.


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