Rules of procedure can't be static, need to evolve with time: Harivansh

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New Delhi, Mar 14 (PTI) Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh Sunday said the rules of procedure cannot remain static and they need to evolve with changing times and as per the demands of future.

Delivering his valedictory address at the two-day orientation programme for the new MPs of the Upper House, he expressed hope they would enrich their knowledge of different aspects of parliamentary procedures by interacting with senior members, domain experts and senior officers of the Rajya Sabha Secretariat.

'The rules of procedure cannot remain static. They will have to evolve through the changing times and with the demands of future,' he said.

He said changes are made in the rules of procedure time to time to make them more relevant and effective, keeping pace with the changing times and future demands.

Talking about the role of Parliamentary Committees, he said they act as a watchdog and an instrument to ensure accountability.

The second day of the programme began with a session on 'lawmaking process' by MP Bhupender Yadav.

MPs Vandana Chavan and Prasanna Acharya spoke on the 'Committee System' and 'Ethics in Politics: Dos & Don'ts for Members' respectively.

Sharing his experience as a member of parliament, Harivansh said the role of a parliamentarian is most complex and challenging.

Competing demands from one's party, from Parliament, State interest and from the constituency and of course from the family make the members’ life a difficult balancing act, he said.

MPs are always on the job, whether in Parliament or outside, travelling and meeting his constituents, he said.

Harivansh informed the members that the Rules and Procedure of Rajya Sabha were updated in 1964 and 13 amendments have been made since then.

On further changes under consideration, he said the Chairman had constituted a Committee under a former Secretary-General which has submitted a comprehensive review report and the changes suggested in the Rules of Procedure are being looked into.

He told the members about the importance of the directions issued by Rajya Sabha Chairman and Lok Sabha Speaker where rules are silent and stressed that directions issued by the Chair are as important for the Members to know as the Rules of Procedure.

'Parliament as an institution can do wonders, if Parliamentarian gives it a chance', the Deputy Chairman said concluding his address. PTI SKC TIR TIR