The issue of price rise is likely to generate heat in the Budget Session of Parliament beginning from Monday with Opposition members today making a strong pitch for a discussion over it in both Houses at an all-party meeting convened by Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan. The Government will also be making a statement in both Houses on the condition of Indians in war-torn Iraq, Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said after the luncheon meeting.
"We will be taking up the general budget, railway budget and also willing to discuss any issue of national importance... the government will also make a statement on the situation of Indians in Iraq. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will make the statement in both Houses," Naidu said.
Leaders of various parties wanted price rise, rail hike and also the plight of Tamil fishermen to be discussed in the over a month-long session, which concludes on August 14.
The Speaker steered clear of all questions on the issue of granting Leader of Opposition status to the Congress, saying the meeting she had convened was to discuss the business before the House.
"The session will have 28 sittings and 168 working hours. Since the Standing Committees for various ministries are yet to be constituted, the demands for grants for various ministries will be passed by both Houses by July 31 after discussion in Parliament instead of the committees," she said.
Naidu said the government is ready for a discussion on any issue and appealed to the Opposition to "cooperate" to ensure that the decorum and dignity of Parliament is maintained and the House business was carried out smoothly.
The Government also intends to bring bills to replace the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Amendment) Ordinance, 2014 and the Ordinance with respect to Polavaram project under Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2014.
TRAI (Amendment) Ordinance cleared on May 28 ensured that the government could appoint Nripendra Misra as Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister. The AP ordinance was promulgated on May 29, ahead of the official division of the state on June 2.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP patriarch L K Advani also attended the lunch but were not present in the meeting.
Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge said that issue of the Leader of the Opposition (LoP) status was not raised in the all-party meeting.