18 November 2019
New Delhi: Speaking on the 250th session of the Rajya Sabha, Prime Minister Modi praised the BJD and NCP for deciding to stay away from the well of the House. While BJD has been the ruling party in Odisha for last 5 terms and reducing BJP to a minor opposition; the NCP is the party that has emerged as a kingmaker in Maharashtra, sparking speculation amid the political deadlock in the state.
Calling the Upper House "eternal", Prime Minister Modi stressed the significance of the House. From mentioning abrogation of Article 370 to triple talaq Bill, Modi highlighted how "historic" the House has been.
Praising the Rajya Sabha, he said it was the House's maturity that ensured the Bill on Triple Talaq and the one on GST were passed, in spite of opposition to it.
Mentioning abrogation of Article 370, Modi said, "Whenever it has been about national good, the Rajya Sabha has risen to the occasion and made a strong contribution.
"We can never forget the role of the Rajya Sabha when Bills pertaining to Articles 370 and 35(A) were passed. This House has worked to further the unity of the country."
Taking a subtle dig at the opposition, he said, "It was believed that the Bill on Triple Talaq would not pass here, but it did." The BJP-led NDA lacked the numbers in the Upper House, yet the House was able to pass it.
PM Modi called the Rajya Sabha as the "supporting house", stressing the important role it plays to keep "checks and balances". Taking about cooperative Centre-state relationship, he said, "Our Constitution inspires us to work for a welfare state. It also motivates us to work for the welfare of states. The Rajya Sabha, as the Council of States, enables us to further the spirit of cooperative federalism."
But in a statement that is likely to be seen from a political prism, the PM praised the BJD and NCP for taking a stated position to stay away from the well in Parliament. He said, "Today I want to appreciate two parties, BJD and NCP. These parties have wonderfully adhered to parliamentary norms. They have never ventured into the well. They have made their points very effectively. Much can be learned from these practices."
The comment assumes significance as BJP in spite of getting 105 seats is not being able to form government in Maharashtra and the NCP appears to be the kingmakers.