Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Tuesday requested the MPs to ask their questions during Question Hour in a short duration and that the Ministers should also reply the queries in limited words for taking more questions.
Birla’s suggestion came during Question Hour session–generally the first hour of a sitting session of Lok Sabha devoted to questions that Members of Parliament raise about any aspect of administrative activity and the concerned Minister is obliged to answer to the Parliament, either orally or in writing, depending on the type of question raised.
Referring the importance of the Question Hour, the Speaker said, “Questions should be asked in short sentences and the reply by the concerned ministers should also be in short so that maximum questions can be taken.”
Birla has made similar requests to the MPs on earlier occasions too.
Through the Question Hour, the government is able to quickly feel the pulse of the nation and adapt its policies and actions accordingly. It is through questions in the Parliament that the government remains in touch with the people in as much as members are enabled thereby to ventilate the grievances of the public in matters concerning the administration.
Questions enable ministries to gauge the popular reaction to their policy and administration. Questions bring to the notice of the Ministers many loopholes which otherwise would have gone unnoticed. Sometimes questions may lead to the appointment of a commission, a court of enquiry or even legislation when matters raised by members are grave enough to agitate the public mind and are of wide public importance.
The Question Hour is an interesting part of the Parliamentary proceedings. Although a question mainly seeks information and tries to elicit facts on a particular subject, there are many a time lively and quicksilver repartee between the members asking the questions and the ministers answering them.
The Question Hour repartee are sometimes coupled with flashes of wit and humour. That is why the public galleries, and the press galleries are packed to the capacity during the Question Hour.