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No Winter Session of Parliament due to spread of coronavirus; Budget Session likely in January

The Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi has said that all parties favour scrapping the session to avoid any Covid spread and jump straight to the Budget session in January.

SNS Web | New Delhi |

Amid the outbreak of coronavirus, the government has decided not to convene the winter session of Parliament.

There will be no winter session of Parliament this time because of the coronavirus outbreak, it said.

The Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi has said that all parties favour scrapping the session to avoid any Covid spread and jump straight to the Budget session in January.

Joshi’s remarks come in a letter responding to Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chaudhary’s demand for a session to discuss controversial new farm laws that are at the core of massive farmer protests on highways near Delhi.

The minister replied that he had held discussions with leaders of all parties and the consensus was not to call a session due to COVID-19.

The monsoon session of the Parliament in September was curtailed as early as amidst the rising coronavirus cases in the country.

During the Monsoon Session, as many as 25 MPs tested positive for Covid-19 which included Union ministers Nitin Gadkari and Prahlad Patel.

Members of both the Houses, on a voluntary basis in regular intervals were taken the RT-PCR test.

According to the new protocol to check the spread of Covid-19, reporters and parliament staff were made to undergo the rapid antigen test mandatory on a regular basis.

Parliament had adopted strong measures including the seating arrangement in a staggered way in chambers of both Houses, as well as galleries to maintain physical distancing. Mobile app for registering of their attendance and seats separated with poly-carbon sheets in the House has also been introduced by the Parliament.