Parliament Monsoon Session: After Leader of Opposition, Congress eyes Standing Committee post, India's excitement over Modi 3.0 at peak

Ananya Shroff
5 Min Read


New Delhi: The effect of the huge decline in BJP's seats in the Lok Sabha elections can be seen in the third term of the Modi government. In fact, the opposition parties are stronger than before and the Congress's seats have increased more than expected. In such a situation, the Bharat Alliance of opposition parties is seeing itself in a strong position inside the Parliament. With 99 seats, the enthusiasm of Congress is also high. After Congress leader Rahul Gandhi became the leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha, the Congress and Bharat Alliance are now eyeing the posts of permanent committees. After winning 236 seats in the Lok Sabha elections, the Bharat Group of opposition parties hopes that they will get the chairmanship of more committees than the permanent committees related to the departments given to the opposition in the last House. These committees are expected to be announced during the upcoming monsoon session. According to the Hindustan Times news, the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha Secretariat have written letters to the parties. Trinamool Congress MP Sudip Bandopadhyay said, 'The Lok Sabha Secretariat has written a letter to me and asked for the names of MPs for various committees.' A senior official of the office of Congress President and Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge has also confirmed that he has received a similar request from the Rajya Sabha Secretariat. There are 16 department-related standing committees for the Lok Sabha and 8 for the Rajya Sabha. In fact, no final decision has been taken yet on the chairpersons of these committees. The decision to select these chairpersons will be taken by Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla.

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Will Rahul become the chairman of the Public Accounts Committee?

A senior Congress strategist said that at least three additional posts of chairpersons in the standing committees are expected to be given to the Congress' India faction. He said, 'Congress should get one more committee. Samajwadi Party should also get one committee, because at present there is no committee under their leadership. Trinamool Congress should also get one post of chairperson.' Apart from this, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Rahul Gandhi is likely to be made the chairman of the Parliament's Accounts Committee (Public Accounts Committee) and some other opposition leaders may also get the responsibility of some committees.

Congress headed three standing committees

Before the May 2024 Lok Sabha elections, the Congress party was chairing three standing committees. These include commerce, environment and chemicals and fertilizers. Despite being the third largest party in Parliament, Trinamool did not get any chairman post. Samajwadi Party's Ramgopal Yadav initially chaired the health committee, but it returned to the BJP after some time. DMK's Kanimozhi chaired the rural development panel. This time the Samajwadi Party (41 MPs in both Houses) and the TMC (42 MPs in both Houses) are entitled to at least one chairman post each. “But the final decision will be taken by Dhankhar or Birla,” said a senior opposition leader (other than the Congress).

Know the opposition's argument

An opposition functionary argued that '55% of the MPs are with the ruling party while 45% are with the opposition. If the chairmanship posts are distributed in this proportion, the ruling party should get 13 chairmen of department-related standing committees, which oversee the functioning of various ministries, and others should get 11.' Apart from the 24 department-related standing committees, there are several other committees in Parliament. These committees handle various aspects of the functioning of the country's supreme law-making body. These include committees related to finance, temporary committees and other standing committees.

Why are Special or Joint Parliamentary Committees formed?

During the session, the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha also sometimes form special committees or joint parliamentary committees. These committees are formed to review a particular law or important issue. For example, joint parliamentary committees can be formed to investigate the stock market scam or the presence of pesticides in soft drinks and beverages. According to two leaders, the secretariat has requested the parties to submit their nominations before the monsoon session begins on July 22.

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