New Delhi: The first phase of the Budget
session of Parliament, which saw the passage of the historic
Women`s Reservation Bill in the Rajya Sabha and a lot of heat
on inflation, came to an end on Tuesday.
Both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, which began with the
address by President Pratibha Patil to the joint sitting on
February 22, witnessed acrimony for days on the issue of price
rise, nearing almost double-digit mark.
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee presented the General
Budget for 2010-11 on February 26. After heated debates in
both Houses, the first leg of the budget making process was
completed with the passage of the appropriation bills which
allow government to withdraw money from the exchequer for some
parts of the next fiscal.
Though the Women`s Reservation Bill, requiring
Constitutional amendment, was passed by the Upper House, it
could not be introduced in the Lok Sabha in view of strong
opposition from RJD, Samajwadi Party and sections of JD(U).
Government managed to get the Women`s Bill - a dream
agenda of UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi - passed in Rajya Sabha
after seven opposing members were marshalled out.
In the wake of strident criticism by the opposition, the
government dropped at the eleventh hour introduction in the
Lok Sabha of a bill that seeks to cap liability in case of
nuclear accidents. Passage of this Bill was considered
important for the operationalisation of the Indo-US nuke deal.
The Rajya Sabha had scheduled sittings on two more days,
but adjourned till April 12 when the two Houses will meet
after the recess, during which Parliamentary Standing
Committees will examine the demands for grants of various