4 Hours ago
NEW DELHI: The two Houses of Parliament will meet at separate times of the day for five hours each -- Rajya Sabha in the first half and Lok Sabha in the second half -- to ensure Covid distancing norms during the Budget Session beginning January 31.
Lok Sabha will meet at 11 am on February 1 for the presentation of the Union Budget and it will meet from 4 pm to 9 pm from February 2 to February 11, when the session will go on a recess.
During sittings of the Lower House of Parliament, Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha chambers and their galleries will be used for seating of members in view of the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, a Lok Sabha bulletin said.
While the exact timings of Rajya Sabha are yet to be formally notified, sources said the Upper House of Parliament could meet from 10 am to 3 pm.
A final decision on timing is yet to be taken as Rajya Sabha Chairman and Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu is infected with COVID-19 and has isolated himself in Hyderabad.
The budget session will begin on January 31 with the address of President Ram Nath Kovind to the joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament.
The second part of the session will be from March 14 to April 8.
But the timings of sittings are not yet clear for Part II of the session.
The Monsoon Session of 2020 was the first full session held under Covid protocol with Rajya Sabha meeting in the first half of the day and Lok Sabha in the second half.
The same process was followed for the first part of the Budget Session in 2021.
For the second part of Budget Session and Monsoon and Winter sessions last year, Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha went back to normal timings, but with members sitting in the chambers and galleries of respective Houses to ensure social distancing.
(THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)