My Press Release at 17th All India Whips’ Conference at Visakhapatnam on 30 September, 2015:

Visakhapatnam, 30 September, 2015: Union Minister of State for Parliamentary & Minority Affairs Shri Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi today said that there is a need to re-define role of Rajya Sabha and State Legislative Councils in the current political situation. Addressing 17th All India Whips’ Conference here in Visakhapatnam, Shri Naqvi said that sometimes, Governments and Houses of Parliament and State Legislatures are not able to get passed the Bills related to interests of the country and the people. Shri Naqvi said that our Constitution makers must have not imagined about today’s political situation when they thought about rights and responsibilities of both the House of Parliament and State Legislatures. Shri Naqvi further said that after voting percentage of 80-90 per cent, the people expect that the Governments and the Houses will work to fulfill their expectations. But, sometimes, people’s welfare gets affected due to politics. Generally, states don’t face such problem, but the Centre often has to go through such situation. Shri Naqvi said that issues related to nation’s progress and welfare of common people should not get affected due to politics. Shri Naqvi said that India is the strongest Parliamentary democracy of the world. Even after some shortcomings and challenges, this system has been further strengthened in the last more than six decades. Shri Naqvi said that even after challenges of terrorism, naxalism and other problems, maximum participation of the people in elections from Kashmir to Kanyakumari, reflects people’s trust in our democratic system. We have a greater responsibility to keep this confidence and trust intact. It is our duty to protect democratic, constitutional and parliamentary values. Shri Naqvi said that Indian democratic system has been a motivation for other countries. Parliamentary democracy is an unbreakable part of the life of Indians. Shri Naqvi said that Parliament and State Legislatures are custodian of people’s interest and welfare. These institutions are the highest and most effective constitutional platform to raise, discuss and resolve issues concerned to the common man. Shri Naqvi said that public perception about Parliament and State Legislatures is a matter of concern for us. Incidents of illogical disturbance and pandemonium in Parliament and State Legislatures have created some kind of negative feeling regarding politicians. Shri Naqvi said that discussion, debate and disturbance are part of the Parliamentary democracy. The Opposition is like an alert guard who puts a check on the Government so that those in power can’t ignore people’s interest. The Opposition has every right to raise its voice in the Houses if the Government is not listening to the people’s problems. The Opposition should play a role of “constructive Opposition” and not an “obstructionist Opposition”. The issues concerned to the common people and nation’s progress should not get affected due to political prejudice. Shri Naqvi said that illogical disruption in Parliament and State Legislatures not only effects image of these institutions but precious public money is also wasted due to disturbance. This should be avoided. Shri Naqvi said that during last Monsoon Session of Parliament, the Bills essential for nation’s growth were blocked due to disturbance. We should understand that the people of the country elect us and send us to Parliament or State Legislatures so that we can work for their betterment. We should become a road of development and not an obstacle in this path. Shri Naqvi said that there is a need to ensure maximum sittings of Parliament and the State Legislatures. Each and every minute of Parliament and State Assemblies should be dedicated to people’s welfare. Shri Naqvi further said that disorderly behavior of Members in Parliament and State Legislatures is a matter of concern. It affects work of these institutions and also image of these supreme bodies. Time has come for us to seriously introspect on these issues. Shri Naqvi said that we may have ideological differences, it is good. But this ideological difference should not come into the way of nation’s progress. Here, the role of Chief Whips and Whips of political parties assumes significance as Chief Whips and Whips are practically “Floor Managers” of their respective political parties.