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Winter Session of Parliament concludes: Mahua's expulsion, 146 Oppn MPs' suspension, key bills passed

The session's most prominent expulsion was that of TMC MP Mahua Moitra, recommended by the Lok Sabha Ethics Committee's report on the "bribe-for-query" case. The subsequent resolution for her expulsion was passed by Lok Sabha, prompting opposition MPs to stage a walkout.

Winter Session of Parliament concludes: Mahua's expulsion, 146 Oppn MPs' suspension, key bills passed AJR
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First Published Dec 22, 2023, 10:40 AM IST

During an eventful Winter Session, both Houses of Parliament adjourned sine die a day earlier than anticipated, drawing the curtains on a session filled with significant occurrences and legislative deliberations. This three-week parliamentary session witnessed notable incidents, including a security breach in Lok Sabha, the suspension of 146 MPs, and the expulsion of Trinamool Congress member Mahua Moitra in connection to the "bribe-for-query" case. Additionally, crucial legislation, including three new Criminal Bills, was successfully passed amidst these deliberations.

This session also marked a historic note as the first to convene in the new Parliament building.

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Here are the key occurrences during the Parliament's Winter Session in 2023:

On December 13, coinciding with the anniversary of the 2001 Parliament attack. Intruders breached the Lok Sabha chamber from the public gallery, releasing yellow smoke from canisters and chanting slogans before being subdued by MPs.

Throughout the session, both Houses deliberated and sanctioned pivotal bills, aiming to replace colonial-era laws such as the Indian Penal Code (IPC), Indian Evidence Act, Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC), Telegraph Act, and Press and Registration of Books Act.

Amid disruptions and protests over the Parliament breach issue, over 140 MPs faced suspension in the Parliament, while 46 were suspended from Rajya Sabha.

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Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla disclosed a 74% productivity rate for the House, highlighting the passage of 18 draft legislations, including the consequential criminal justice bills.

In his valedictory remarks, Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar emphasized the Upper House's 65-hour business conduct during 14 sittings. However, he expressed regret over the nearly 22 hours lost due to avoidable disruptions, impacting the overall productivity, which stood at 79%.

Rajya Sabha passed a total of 17 Bills encompassing legislation related to Jammu & Kashmir, Election Commissioners' appointments, the Post Office Bill, Telecommunications Bill, and three significant Bills: Bharatiya Sakshya Bill, Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita, and Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha Sanhita. These pivotal measures were ratified in this session.

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The session's most prominent expulsion was that of TMC MP Mahua Moitra, recommended by the Lok Sabha Ethics Committee's report on the "bribe-for-query" case. The subsequent resolution for her expulsion was passed by Lok Sabha, prompting opposition MPs to stage a walkout.

In conclusion, Lok Sabha Speaker acknowledged 14 sittings, totaling 61 hours and 50 minutes of productive work. Eighteen bills, including the Bharatiya Nyaya (Second) Sanhita, Bharatiya Nagarik Suraksha (Second) Sanhita, and Bharatiya Sakshya (Second), replacing the IPC, the CrPC, and the Evidence Act, were successfully passed. Additionally, a bill to regulate the appointment of Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners was approved, among others such as the Post Office Bill, Telecommunication Bill, and Press and Registration of Periodicals Bill.

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