No Winter Session of Parliament this year due to COVID-19, Budget Session in January, says Centre
Earlier this year, the Monsoon Session of Parliament was delayed due to coronavirus and held in September instead of July. It was also cut short by 10 days due to the COVID-19 situation
The Centre has confirmed that there will be no Winter Session of Parliament this year in view of the coronavirus crisis. This development comes days after Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, sent a letter to Speaker Om Birla, urging him to convene a short Winter Session of Parliament to discuss issues such as the farmers’ agitation.
As per The Indian Express, in a letter to Chowdhury, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi stated that the government is willing to have the next session of Parliament at the “earliest” and that it would be appropriate to have the Budget session in January.
The past few years have seen the Budget Session of Parliament began in January on two occasions — 28 January, 2018 and 31 January, 2019.
The winter session of Parliament normally starts from the last week of November or the first week of December, as per PTI.
“At present, we are in the middle of December and a COVID-19 vaccine is expected very soon,” Joshi told Chowdhury. “In this regard, I have informally contacted floor leaders of various political parties and they have expressed their concerns about the ongoing pandemic and opined of doing away with Winter Session” the letter read, as per NDTV.
The Union minister cited the sharp increase in cases in Delhi last month and said that winter months were crucial for managing the coronavirus .
He also said that it would be appropriate to move straight to the budget session. “The government is willing to have the next session of Parliament at the earliest,” he was quoted as saying by The Indian Express. “It would be appropriate to have the Budget Session 2021 in January 2021 keeping in mind the unprecedented circumstances created by COVID-19 pandemic.”
Talking about the monsoon session which was delayed due to the pandemic, he appreciated cooperation from all political parties for a productive session held under extraordinary circumstances by making special logistical arrangements.
The Constitution broadly stipulates one major rule that there should not be a gap of more than six months between two sessions of Parliament.
However, it has been a convention to hold three sessions of Parliament budget — monsoon and winter — in a year.
With inputs from agencies
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