In a departure from the norm, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is replying to the debate on Motion of Thanks on President Ram Nath Kovind’s address, in the Rajya Sabha, day seven of the ongoing Budget session of Parliament. Usually, Prime Ministers speak in both the Houses of Parliament – Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha. However, with the Opposition protesting refusing to end protests in the Lok Sabha over the contentious farm laws, the PM’s reply might take place only in the Rajya Sabha, marking a departure from the norm.
In a collective show of strength, more than a dozen Opposition parties had collectively boycotted the President’s address on January 29, which marks the commencement of the Budget session. While the debate on Motion of Thanks happened rather smoothly in the Rajya Sabha, with the Centre and the Opposition agreeing to discuss the issue in the Upper House for a total of 15 hours, no discussion could take place in the Lok Sabha or the Lower House. According to an official statement, the first six sittings of the Rajya Sabha in the ongoing session were productive, registering productivity of 82.10%.
What Modi says on COVID-19:
- Nations labelled as ‘third world countries’ are developing vaccines for humanity. Largest vaccination drive against COVID-19 underway in India. World proudly says it has received vaccines from India, said PM Modi.
- “Credit of winning the war against COVID-19 goes not to the govt or individual, but to India,” he added.
- The credit for winning the fight against corona does not lie with any government, but the people of India.
- India fought the ‘unknown enemy’ of coronavirus with a new vision. The eyes of the world are in India. There are expectations from India and there is a confidence that India will contribute to the betterment of our planet.
- The COVID-19 period has added new strength to our federal structure and the spirit of cooperative federalism
- We can be proud of running the fastest vaccination programme in the world. India has seen days when there was a large threat of polio, smallpox. Nobody knew whether India will get a vaccine or how many people will get it. From those days, we are nowhere- when our nation is making vaccines for the world. This increases our self-confidence. The world recognises India’s contribution towards mankind during coronavirus pandemic, say PM Modi.
What Modi exclaims on the farmers:
- Everyone in Parliament talked about farmers protest but didn’t speak on the reason behind the protest, says PM Modi. The discussion around improvement related to farmers’ issues was going in for the last two decades. There is no development with obstructions. But they should not stand in way of farmers’ development, he added.
- PM quotes former PM Chaudhary Charan Singh while talking about the farmers’ protest. He exclaims that we need to keep small farmers at the centre of our policies to pay tribute to Chaudhary Charan Singh.
- Farm loan waivers do not benefit small farmers, says PM.
- I would like to appreciate the contribution of Deve Gowda on the discussions relating to agriculture in the house. His words have added a great perspective to the debate. He himself has a strong association with the agriculture sector.
- After 2014, we expanded the scope of crop insurance to include small farmers. Small farmers at the centre of all our policies, schemes, says PM
- Every previous govt has spoken of agricultural reforms; everyone agrees on the need for reform in agriculture, exclaims Modi.
- Manmohan Ji is here, I’d read out his quote. Those taking a U-Turn (farm laws) will perhaps agree with him. “There are other rigidities because of marketing regime set up in the 1930s which prevent our farmers from selling their products where they get the highest rate of return…”, says PM
- You should be proud of what I am doing, PM to Congress on farm laws.
- Apprehensions about something new is very normal says PM on-farm laws.
- There are problems in agriculture despite record production. All have to come together to reform agriculture. Our agricultural minister has been talking to farmers.
- However, protesting your right might take away the old people. PM asks farmers to end agitation; says ready to talk, all options open.
- A new jamaat of ‘Andolanjeevi’ has come up in India who is present in every protest. The country needs to identify them, says PM.
MSP was, is and will remain in future, PM reiterates in Rajya Sabha
Modi says on general perspectives exclaims thus,
- “Why are we mocking the nations’ resolve?,” PM asks opposition
I am glad that all your anger is directed at me; hope this makes you live in peace: PM Modi to the opposition.
- There are many things to oppose, but don’t indulge in things that hurt the morale of the country, says PM Modi.
- You might’ve seen on the social media-an old woman sitting outside her hut on the footpath, with a lit earthen lamp, praying for the welfare of India. We’re mocking her! If somebody who never went to school thinks they can serve India by lighting lamps, they can do it. It’s being mocked!
- Those who question India’s democracy, I ask them to understand that our democracy is not a western institution but a human institution, says PM Modi.
- We need to save the country from new FDI- Foreign destructive ideology added Modi.
- Since 2014 we have initiated changes in the agriculture sector aimed at empowering the farmer. The crop insurance scheme was changed to make it more farmer-friendly. The PM-KISAN scheme was also brought in. We are working for small farmers. Bengal farmers were deprived because of politics of the ruling establishment there, said PM Modi.
In Rajya Sabha, over 50 MPs expressed their views for over 13 hours, they expressed their invaluable views and hence, Modi expressed his gratitude. “India is a land of opportunities in a real sense, opportunities are waiting for us. India can’t afford to miss opportunities,” said PM Modi.