New Delhi: Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday termed the 249th session of the Upper House as the most productive one at 104 percent which ranked fifth-best in the last 41 years.
Complementing the members Mr. Naidu said, "Let's stay with the new normal of this session. Having reached where we have ( in terms of productivity and reduction in disruptions) the challenge will be to sustain this." During this session, Rajya Sabha passed 31 Bills as against 36 by the Lok Sabha, he said.
He said the legislations declaring Instant Triple Talaq as illegal and the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganization Bill which divided Jammu and Kashmir into two separate Union Territories were "far-reaching," and "significant." This legislation addressed "legacy issues", the Chairman said.
The Rajya Sabha, which was adjourned Sine Die, put itself in Parliament history books for being the best session compared to the last 17 sessions of the upper house.
Even as convened for it last sitting this session, the House considered and amended the "Supreme Court (Number of Judges) Act 1956". It increased the number of judges in the apex court from 32 to 35.
The Rajya Sabha also paid tributes to the former External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj - a member of the house who passed away yesterday- and observed a moment of silence.
The Chairman also said that on 19 occasions the House sat beyond scheduled hours to legislate in this session. And, this session lost just 9 hours and 12 minutes to disruption - one of the lowest in many years.
During the last five sessions, the productivity of the House ranged from a low of 7.44 pc to a maximum of 65.60 pc and the change is gratifying with the House reporting 100 pc or more productivity for the first time in the last five years.
"However, the House sat beyond the scheduled time on 19 days and gained around 28 hours. Going by the total time spent on transacting the business of a different kind, with a total time availed of around 195 hours this session is the best of the 36 sessions spread over the last 11 years since the 213th session in 2008 from when such information is maintained,'' the Chairman said in his valedictory statement.
During the last five sessions, the total functional time of this House has been only 173 hours and 33 minutes spread over a total of 88 sittings.