Kerala Kaumudi Online
Tuesday, 30 May 2023 7.45 AM IST

People are the ones who lost in assembly battle


It can be considered a relief that the legislative session was cut short after days of absurd drama. The Assembly did not get an opportunity to consider various issues affecting people's lives. Even though it was a budget session, there was no serious discussion. The matters that needed to be considered by the House till March 30 were considered on Tuesday in just half an hour and passed in one go. Many people will not be ready to accept the government's explanation that the session was cut short as it was impossible to smoothly conduct the session.

One cannot help but say that the opposition's protest strategy allowed the government to run away from unpleasant and difficult issues. The opposition was able to fulfil what the government wanted. As usual, it was the people who lost due to the battle between the two sides. Significant changes, including new tax proposals, are coming from April 1. These changes will raise the cost of living. Discussion and passage of budget-related finance bills were one of the main agenda items in this session. Everything went awry in the noise and protest raised by the opposition against the denial of permission to introduce adjournment motions.

People are now doomed to pay higher rates for everything from April 1 without any protest. The cess of Rs 2 on petrol and diesel introduced in the budget is going to be a part of the common man's life. The rate hike will be applicable to land transactions and vehicles. The increase in the fair value of land is twenty percent. Tax on building tax, liquor, new vehicles etc will increase. The finance minister, who came up with many tax proposals that would adversely affect the people, got an opportunity to implement them without facing any criticism. It is not certain whether the opposition, which was stuck on the issue of the adjournment motion, did not understand any of this. In any case, both sides are equally responsible for the budget meeting being disrupted in this way. There is so much drama and tension taking place during the sessions of the Parliament and state legislatures that one starts to wonder why they are even convening. It is said that assemblies should meet for at least a third of the year. However, such a practice is not seen in any state. Most of the sessions are held only to fulfil the constitutional obligation to meet once every six months. If convened, legislation and discussions will be only for the namesake. Bills are passed without any discussion. There will always be political issues to create a ruckus and fight. The focus of those on the ruling front and the opposition will be on political issues aimed at the next election.

Half a dozen bills, including money bills, were passed in one go on Tuesday amid the uproar in the Kerala assembly. The Private Forest Amendment Bill was passed by avoiding the checking by the subject committee. The controversial Public Health Bill was also similarly passed by the assembly. The government does not face any difficulty in these matters as it has a large majority in the House. It is not a good sign that those who are passionate about democratic systems proceed unilaterally by avoiding discussions and debates.

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