Kevadia President Ram Nath Kovind, on Wednesday, said that elected representatives should engage in a healthy dialogue in Parliament and legislative assemblies and refrain from using unparliamentary language during debates.
Addressing the inaugural session of the 80th All India Presiding Officers’ Conference at Tent City in Gujarat’s Kevadia village, his first outdoor public event in the last eight months, Kovind said such indiscipline by public representatives in legislatures hurts the sentiments of the people.
“It is expected from elected representatives that they remain committed to democratic values. The biggest challenge for elected representatives and democratic institutions is to fulfil the expectations of the people,” he said.
“I believe that people of this country expect that their elected representatives will follow parliamentary norms. People get hurt when their elected representatives use unparliamentary words or indulge in indiscipline in Parliament or in the assembly,” Kovind added.
Kovind’s words come months after the parliament went against many of its own rules to pass the farm laws, protests against which have consumed several parts of India.
Instead of following the regular procedure of division of votes after such a resolution by any MP, deputy chairman Harivansh Narayan Singh went ahead with a voice vote, leading to bedlam and the suspension of 22 opposition MPs. The conduct came under heavy scrutiny, especially because Rajya Sabha TV footage had been muted.
Kovind also asked Speakers to facilitate a healthy dialogue in the House to keep away “unnecessary bitterness” in the discussion, as there has been a steady increase in the hopes and awareness of the general public.
Underlining the significance of opposition in parliamentary democracy, Kovind said it has an important role along with the ruling party, and so there is a need for understanding, cooperation, and meaningful exchange of thoughts between the two.
“The ultimate goal of a democratic system is public welfare, which can be assured with the uplift of the backward and deprived of the country. I believe all three wings of state together will continue to work towards achieving this goal,” Kovind said.
(With PTI inputs)