"It was a rare occasion in Parliament, of political piety, of consciousness, conscientiousness and consensus across the political divide, among MPs from the left, right and centre.
On Friday, the members of the Rajya Sabha defected from Benthamian utilitarianism to Kantian deontology, and devoted time to a troubling question, on how to improve the productivity of Parliament. The moment presented itself when Akali Dal MP Naresh Gujral moved a private members bill, ‘The Parliament (Enhancement of Productivity) Bill, 2017’. The bill moots that Parliament meet for a fixed number of days, at least for over 100 days, as it was in the first decade of the Republic.
Gujral observed that European parliaments meet for 200 days. Jairam Ramesh proposed 120 days. There were also suggestions for the house to start at 10 am instead of 11 am, and an annual special session for national issues. The two-hour-forty-minute discussion, which will be continued, and the transcript of which is nearly 80 pages long, saw references to the French Revolution, the Constituent Assembly, economist Albert Hirschman being quoted, and recitation of poetry."
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