New Delhi: After two days of acrimony and
bitter feud over Women`s Reservation Bill in the Rajya Sabha,
members of the House were on Wednesday in a bonhomie mood as they got together to bid farewell to 99 of their colleagues who have
either completed their tenure or are close to doing so.
Among the 99 members, a few had already retired last year
while some others were elected to the Lok Sabha in the last
Besides Union Ministers A K Antony and Anand Sharma,
prominent among those who would be retiring this year include
their ministerial colleagues Ambika Soni, Jairam Ramesh, M S
Gill, BJP leader M Venkaiah Naidu and SP leader Jaya Bachchan.
Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj,
Union Ministers Farooq Abdullah, Sushilkumar Shinde, Praful
Patel, V Narayanasamy and BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi were
among those who were elected to the 15th Lok Sabha after
being members of the Rajya Sabha.
Speaking at the farewell function, Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh said Rajya Sabha can perform an exemplary role
and bring to bear the quality of experience which is not
always available to the Lok Sabha.
Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari described the Upper
House as the lynchpin of the federal structure which is a
remarkable collection of persons with diverse skills and
experience which together can produce a compendium of
The evening also saw rendition of ghazals by noted singer