New Delhi: Taking MPs down the memory lane, Congress member Rishang Keishing, who has the rare distinction of having been a member of the first Lok Sabha in 1952, on Sunday recalled the high standards of Parliamentary democracy then and urged members to follow the footsteps of national leaders.
Speaking in Rajya Sabha at the end of day-long special session to celebrate 60th anniversary of the first sitting of Parliament, he recounted the healthy Parliamentary tradition earlier when members of treasury and opposition respected each other.
The 92-year-old leader from Manipur, who is serving his second term in Rajya Sabha now after being elected to the state Assembly seven times, said in those days nobody used to troop into well or shout at each other.
During his speech, he was greeted by members from treasury as well opposition by thumping of desk.
"Speeches in Parliament used to be peaceful and constructive...Intervention used to be very cordial....That was the best time of Parliamentary democracy," Keishing, who started his Parliamentary career as an opposition member from Socialist Party, recalled.
"Question hours used to be very peaceful," he said.
He said it was enriching experience for him sitting with stalwarts of freedom movement like Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Abul Kalam Azad, Raj Kumari Amrit Kaur and Jagjivan Ram.
Comparing the functioning of Parliament now and those days, Keishing rued the frequent disruption of Houses and members rushing to well on matters not relevant to the nation.