Ahead of the Budget Session of Parliament, expected to be a heated one with the opposition demanding rollback of the agricultural laws and regarding the WhatsApp chat leaks, the government has called for an all-party meeting. Sources in the government told CNN-News18 it will be held virtually on January 30.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Leader of the House in Rajya Sabha Thawarchand Gehlot, Deputy Rajya Sabha leader Piyush Goyal, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi, MoS Parliamentary Affairs Arjunram Meghwal and V Muraleedharan will attend the meeting as well as floor leaders of all political parties from both Houses.
Sources said the government has already spoken to the floor leaders of various political parties and a letter of invitation sent out.
“We have a call for an all-party meeting at 11.30am on January 30. The meeting will take place virtually. We will put forth our business and also listen to the concerns of the opposition during this meeting,” said Joshi.
On the demand by the Congress for a Joint Parliamentary Committee on the WhatsApp chat leak, he said, “That demand has no standing. What is the government to do about a chat between two individuals?”
The Budget Session gets underway on January 29, with the presidential address at 11am followed by the tabling of the Economic Survey. The Union Budget will be presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on February 1 at 11am.
The all party meeting, which is a parliamentary norm, could not be held during the Monsoon Session of due to the coronavirus pandemic.