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With masks, staggered seating, mobile app for attendance, monsoon session of Parliament begins

Soon after the lower House assembled for the day, Speaker Om Birla read out the obituary references in memory of the departed lawmakers.

SNS | New Delhi |

The monsoon session of Parliament has been started on Monday with unprecedented precautions including staggered sittings of both houses and social distancing between the members.

The Lok Sabha observed a 2-minute silence to honour the parliamentarians, following which the Speaker adjourned the house for an hour.

Parliament has 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.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivered a strong message on the China issue right before the beginning of the monsoon session of Parliament by saying, “We hope parliament and all members will unitedly send the message that the nation stands with our soldiers.”

“Our soldiers are standing firm at the borders with a lot of courage, passion and strong resolve to protect their motherland. They are standing on difficult heights and in a few days, will weather snow. In the same manner, I am confident parliament will send a message, in one voice, that it stands firmly behind soldiers guarding our borders,” PM Modi said.

There will be 36 Parliamentary sittings — 18 each for both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha — in the Monsoon Session which will continue till October 1.

Soon after the lower House assembled for the day, Speaker Om Birla read out the obituary references in memory of the departed lawmakers that included former President Pranab Mukherjee, who passed away here on August 31 after undergoing treatment for nearly three weeks.

The House, which began at 9 am, also remembered sitting MP H. Vasanthakumar, eminent vocalist Pandit Jasraj; Gurdas Singh Badal (Member, 5th Lok Sabha); Nepal Singh (MP, 16th Lok Sabha); Ajit Jogi (MP, 12th and 14th Lok Sabhas); P. Namgyal (7th, 8th, 11th); and Paras Nath Yadav (MP, 12th and 14th).

As per the reports, the government is likely to make statement in the parliament on the India-China issue in the Parliament.

There have been multiple attempts by the Chinese forces to drive the Indian troops out of the key heights at the mountainous Ladakh region in last few days.

Both sides blamed each other of firing in the air as shots were fired for the first time in 45 years.

(With inputs from IANS)