Budget session 2022: What to expect on Day 1?
The Budget session of the Parliament kicked off on Monday with President Ram Nath Kovind's address to both houses. The session will run until April 8, according to the recommendation of the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs. The first half of the session will continue till February 11 and the second half will begin on March 14 following a month-long break.
- The session is taking place in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, therefore, special precautions have been taken to ensure the safety of the Members of Parliament (MPs).
- The timings of sessions of both houses will be separated and the seating arrangement has also been changed.
- After the President's address, the Lok Sabha will convene to conduct business.
On Monday, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the Economic Survey prepared by the Chief Economic Advisor. It is an analysis of the performance of key sectors of the economy, the challenges it is likely to face, and their possible solutions. This year's Economic Survey is likely to feature a ray of hope as the country recovers from the impact of the pandemic.
Sitharaman will introduce the Union Budget for the fiscal year 2022-23 on the second day of the Budget session. This is the fourth time she will be delivering a Budget speech. She is known for giving extended Budget speeches, and it is expected that she will do so again this year. In 2020, Sitharaman delivered a speech that lasted for nearly three hours.
The Budget session will be split into two parts, with 10 sittings in the first and 19 sittings in the second. The Rajya Sabha will be convened from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., while the Lok Sabha is scheduled from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Members will be assigned seats in chambers and galleries of both houses (except the press gallery).
The opposition parties are gearing up to confront the Modi government over Pegasus snooping claims, farmers' issues, and the border dispute with China on the first day of the session. After a report claimed that India purchased the spyware as part of a defense contract with Israel in 2017, the opposition is planning to take on the government as a united front.
"There shall be no 'Zero Hour' on January 31 and February 1, 2022," read a bulletin released by the Parliament on Friday. "Members are informed that matters of urgent public importance raised during 'Zero Hour' will be taken up from February 2, 2022.," it added. However, the members can raise issues from Wednesday and may table notices on Tuesday.