Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said democracy is not just a system but a natural tendency of India.
Addressing the inaugural session of the 82nd All India Presiding Officers’ Conference here virtually, he stressed, “We have to take the country to newer heights, achieve extraordinary goals in the years to come.”
“These resolutions will be fulfilled only by ‘sabka prayas’ (everyone’s efforts). And in democracy, in the federal system of India, when we talk about ‘sabka prayas’, then the role of all the states is its major foundation”.
Continuing with the importance of ‘sabka prayas’, the Prime Minister said, be it the solution to long-pending issues of northeast or completion of big development projects halted for decades — there are numerous works like these that have been completed by the nation in the last few years with efforts of everyone.
He cited the fight against coronavirus pandemic as a great example of ‘sabka prayas’.
“The traditions and arrangements of our house should be Indian in nature. Our policies, our laws should strengthen the spirit of Indianness, the resolve of ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat’. Most importantly, our own conduct in the House should be according to Indian values. It’s the responsibility of all of us,” said the Prime Minister.
He said, “Our country is full of diversity. In our journey of the development of thousands of years, we have come to realise that even in the midst of diversity, flows the grand and divine unbroken stream of unity. This unbroken stream of unity, cherishes our diversity and preserves it.”
“Can three-four days in a year be kept in the House in such a way when public representatives doing something special for society talk about their experience, tell the country about this aspect of their social life also.
“You will see, along with people’s representatives, other people of society will also get to learn a lot from this.”
Modi added, “Can we think of setting a separate time for quality debate as well? Such a debate in which dignity, seriousness is fully followed, no one should make political slurs on anyone. In a way, it is the healthiest time of the house, a healthy day.”
In his speech, Modi proposed the ‘One Nation, One Legislative Platform’ idea.
“I have an idea of ‘One Nation One Legislative Platform’. A portal that not only gives the necessary technological boost to our parliamentary system but also works to connect all the democratic units of the country.”
“Next 25 years are very important for India. In this, we can implement only one mantra — duty, duty & duty,” the Prime Minister stressed.
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said the main objective of the conference was to secure appropriate coordination of parliamentary procedure throughout India.
He said that the aim, objective and scope of the conference was on widening the democratisation of the legislatures and evolution of responsibility for better functioning of the democracy.
He also felt the need for more use of technology to bring effectiveness in the functioning of the House.
Birla expressed hope that the conference would go a long way in strengthening the democratic set up of the country.
He said that the Parliament and state legislatures were the first forum to ventilate public grievances and to ensure the responsibility of executives.
He said problems and situations that arise in the floor of the House should be redressed effectively.
Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said that the Assembly of Himachal Pradesh was known for its high traditions and positive discussions in democratic set up.
Thakur urged the Prime Minister to provide the nation e-academy for the state in Dharamsala town in Kangra district.
He said Himachal Pradesh was the first state which started paperless work in its Vidhan Sabha which was today known as e-Vidhan. He said this House had been witness to many important activities in the constitutional history of the country and the state.
Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh Narayan Singh said the All India Presiding Officers Conference was not only an event to celebrate the 100 glorious years of the democracy, but also a time to ponder over the targets and objectives for next 100 years.
He expressed concern over the delay in implementation of assurances given in the House.
Speakers of various Vidhan Sabhas, Secretary General of Lok Sabha, former Speakers of Himachal Vidhan Sabha, ministers, MPs and MLAs among others were also present on the occasion.
The All India Presiding Officers’ Conference (AIPOC), the apex body of the Legislatures in India, is celebrating its hundred years in 2021.
To commemorate the centennial year of AIPOC, the 82nd edition of the All India Presiding Officers’ Conference is being held in Shimla on November 17-18. The first conference was also held in Shimla in 1921.