Unity in opposition was visible when the suspension of twenty five Congress members from Lok Sabha brought together several opposition parties who boycotted the Lok Sabha. Congress, Trinamool Congress, JD(U), Muslim League and NCP boycotted the proceedings of Lok Sabha. Soon after the House met, members of the Left, Samajwadi Party and RJD walked out as a mark of solidarity with the MPs suspended for five working days by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan yesterday for causing disruptions.
In the Rajya Sabha, Congress and several other opposition parties created pandemonium over the issue, leading to a washout of the day’s proceedings. Outside, Congress MPs, led by party President Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, staged a sit-in near Mahatma Gandhi’s statue along with leaders of SP, RJD and AAP.
The opposition benches in the Lok Sabha wore a deserted look as the House conducted its listed business for the day and passed the Railways Appropriations Bill 2015.
Replying to the debate Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu said, the government has undertaken several measures for railway projects to kickstart country’s economy. He said, the public sector Life Insurance Corporation has agreed to provide one lakh fifty thousand crore rupees for five years for the development of rail infrastructure. He said, 17 states have come forward to take part in the joint projects to expand rail infrastructure. He thanked Maharashtra government for earmarking 10 thousand crore rupees in this regard.
Advocating for a dedicated power source for railways, Mr Prabhu said his ministry will focus on energy and sign an MoU soon with National Thermal Power Corporation to set up a solar project. Referring to encroachment of railway land, he said digital mapping of the land has been started. Giving details about the progress made in the implementation of various budgetary announcements, the Minister said so far 79 items have been completed. The Minister said a quarterly review of progress in the implementation of rail projects will be made public.