President Ram Nath Kovind will address the joint sitting on February 1, following which the Union Budget will be presented. The session is likely to conclude by April 8, with a recess of 20 days between February 15 and March 8.
MPs to undergo COVID-19 tests ahead of Parliament session
According to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, the Rajya Sabha will function from 9 am to 2 pm and the Lok Sabha from 4 pm to 8 pm. All the Members of the Parliament will be requested to undergo COVID-19 tests before the start of the Parliament session. The speaker also added that RT-PCR tests will be conducted on January 27 and 28 on the Parliament premises. Necessary arrangements will also be made to conduct RT-PCR tests for the families and staff members of MPs.
“Vaccination drive policy finalised by the Centre and the states will apply to the parliamentarians as well,” Om Birla said. He added that the Question Hour will be allowed during the Parliament Session for an affixed time of one hour.
“I will talk to all political leaders and then the issues for debate and bills will be decided at the Business Advisory Committee [meeting] of the two Houses.”
Birla said he has not received any proposal so far for a special discussion on farm issues. “But I will meet all parties on January 28. I am already in touch with different parties.”
Birla said no physical copies of Budget papers will be provided. “Online budget documents will be provided.”
Birla said food served in Parliament canteens for MPs and others will become costlier as a subsidy given for it has been stopped. News agency PTI reported the Lok Sabha Secretariat is expected to save annually over ₹8 crore with the end to the subsidy.
The Parliament will be resuming after a long gap, since the Monsoon Session held in September. The Winter Session which is usually held during November-December was also cancelled owing to the pandemic.