Notwithstanding the tussle over the Leader of Opposition issue, members to as many as 18 Parliament committees and government bodies have been elected unanimously for the first time in decades. Among the Committees to which unanimous elections have been held under the BJP-led governmment are the all important parliamentary financial committees including the crucial Public Accounts Committee, the Estimates Committee and the Committee on Public Undertakings. Also in this list are committees for the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes and the committee on OBCs.
Sources said better floor management and coordination with the opposition parties through back-channels led to mutual agreement between leaders of various parties, resulting in unanimous election following withdrawal of nominations by as many as 34 MPs. There were a total of 159 nominations that were received for as many as 148 positions in 18 committees and government bodies. Sources said the Parliamentary Financial Committees are keenly contested for the last many years, but this time the new government has helped formulate them within the first few days of the first Session of the 16th lok Sabha.
The sources recalled that the last time such unanimous elections were held to the important parliamentary panels and government bodies was in 1984 when Congress was elected with an absolute majority. While the Committee on Public Accounts has 15 members, that on Estimates has 30 and the Committee on Public Enterprises has 15 members.