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Rajya Sabha chaos: Who's responsible for not letting the house work, government or the opposition?
During the ongoing winter session of the parliament, the upper house Rajya Sabha is witnessing large scale adjournments due to opposition's protest on various issues. First it was Sadhvi Niranjana Jyoti, who had used an abusive remark against the oppostion leaders. And now the upper house is facing the opposition's protest on religious conversion row.

The opposition leaders in Rajya Sabha are adamant on their demand that Prime Minister Modi make a statement on the issue of religious conversion. However the government is saying that it is ready for the discussion on the same issue in the house.

Opposition is saying that Lok sabha is able to function only because of government's majority there and its autocracy. While the government is saying that Rajya Sabha is not able to function because of opposition's majority and its autocracy.

How much truth is there in opposition's and government's accusations and claims? Who's behaving in autocratic way, the government or the opposition? Or there's some other reason that is responsible for not letting the house function.

Dr. Navnita Chadha Behera, a Political Science professor at Delhi University said, "Both or neither (is responsible). Ultimately I would say it is the responsibility of the government as they have to carry the legislations through. But, both the opposition leaders and the government leaders have to come down from their stand and work together. And in the ultimate analysis, I think it's the government's responsibility to ensure that the legislation is through. Parliament has to function. See, it is not surprising. This is the same government, which in opposition did not allow UPA to function, now the tables have turned. So the UPA is doing what BJP has did earlier and BJP is doing what the UPA did earlier. So, it is difficult to point a finger."

Dr. Dhananjay Joshi, an Associate Political Science Professor at Delhi's IP University said, "I think in democracy voice of decent should always be welcomed. But at the same time the opposition should also be very much tolerant. They should give time to the government to at least work smoothly. The present government has taken charge just 6 months back and you are expecting all kind of changes within this six months tenure. This is not a one day magic. I still feel that Parliament should be allowed to work because that runs from the tax payers money. So, I feel this is a mockery of the system. We have selected you, we have sent you to the parliament to make laws. If you are wasting them, then it is the wastage of time, money and energy. I think in a democratic country, both the opposition and the government are like two parallel tyres of a vehicle, and both the opposition parties and the governing parties are important. But at this time the opposition should give some time to the government to work and the government also should try to protect themselves from such statements, which aggravates the opposition. They also should not do things, which affects the harmony of the country, as we need our country to develop. We can't achieve the vision 2020, till both the tyres are not working simultaneously."

Dr. Mohammad Badrul Alam, Professor of Political Science at Jamia Millia Islamia University said, "I think, neither one (is responsible). Here the political culture is to be blamed. The thing is during UPA I and UPA II, the BJP was on the other side, they played the same game of disruption. I think it is high time both the government and the opposition, should rise above this partition politics and stop polarizing this and try to think about the government. I think I must give the credit to the Prime Minister, I think he means to have an inclusive agenda as he says, 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas'. Everybody should understand that he is not the Prime Minister of BJP or NDA, but he is the Prime Minister of the whole country. We have chosen the Parliament members and we expect them to behave responsibily and as adults, either it is from the ruling party or from the opposition party. Speakers Hamid Ansari or Sumitra mhahjan, they should call a meeting of all the important leaders of all the political parties and talk to them. You know I perfectly agree to disagree, but there is a particular forum to do so, but not taking part is actually wastage of money and wastage of time. I think that does not reflect well for the India's democracy and India's image abroad. It is high time that all the political parties should at least agree on certain minimum agenda and try to get it done in a very robust debate in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. And at the end of it let the votes be counted and then somebody wins and somebody loses."

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Sankara Narayanan
One wonders if Modi has decided on the disastrous course of taking after Manmohan Singh, sitting like a Madam Tussaud wax figure, the same expressionless face, eyes unblinkingly staring in front, and making absolutely no difference, and no contribution, to the House proceedings. The logjam in the Rajya Sabha over the issue of re-conversion of Muslims into Hinduism was entirely of Modi's making. I repeat it: Modi's making, not the BJP's because the BJP is no more than the reflection of Modi's persona and echo of his voice. Not that of the Congress, or any of the parties in the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, because what they are doing is precisely what is expected of them, especially when they have an opportunity to pay the BJP back in its own coin. In short, Modi is the pre-eminent strategist of his party, the promoter of its prospects and shaper of its destiny. In short, he is the mover and shaker, moulder and maker, the mascot and the talisman, of the party. Take away Modi, and we are left with a ragtag bunch of clueless babes in the wood. If only Modi, the moment the so-called secular parties in the Rajya Sabha demanded the clarification of the government's position, stood up and said that he too was against forcible conversions and asked the secular parties point-blank to affirm their support to a strong legislation against forcible conversions of any kind, he would have called their bluff, for all the world to see, then and there. He would have applied the quietus to the synthetic controversy whipped up by the Opposition and helped the House proceed with its regular business. Instead, he left the task to second and third rankers in the BJP and in the process, invited on the government and inflicted on the nation, the ugly and costly ruckus that held up proceedings for so many days.
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