Tendulkar’s attendance over his six-year term in the Rajya Sabha was just 8%, Mary Kom is averaging 53% in only the first two years of her tenure.
New Delhi: The word legend is bandied about a little too loosely in today’s day and age, but there’s no doubt the epithet fits perfectly when it comes to Sachin Tendulkar in cricket and M.C. Mary Kom in boxing. Their legendary achievements were why both were nominated to the Rajya Sabha. But the comparison ends there.
In terms of their performance as MPs, Mary Kom has far surpassed the ‘god’ of cricket, despite serving less than half the number of years in Parliament, according to data from PRS Legislative Research.
Tendulkar was nominated to the Upper House by Manmohan Singh’s UPA-II government while still an active cricketer, on 27 April, 2012. He retired from the game in November 2013, and served as an MP till 26 March, 2018. However, it was no secret that he was one of the worst-performing MPs in terms of attendance — a mere 8 per cent over his six-year term.
Mary Kom, on the other hand, was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by Narendra Modi’s NDA government, and began her term on 26 April, 2016. Since then, she has kept up an average attendance of 53 per cent, despite being an active sportsperson — she won a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, in April.
Tendulkar’s attendance figure in his first year in Parliament was 5 per cent. The number improved only slightly to 8.5 per cent over the next five sessions of Parliament or around two years — the same point where Mary Kom currently stands.
In the master blaster’s first year in Parliament, he did not attend a single day in the budget and winter sessions, while in the monsoon session, his attendance was 5 per cent. In 2013 too, he didn’t attend the budget session; his attendance in the monsoon session was 5 per cent, while in the winter session, soon after he retired, it improved to 10 per cent.
The year 2014, being a Lok Sabha election year, saw the winter session come up first, in which Tendulkar upped his attendance to 14 per cent. However, he did not attend a single day for the rest of the year.
The only time Tendulkar registered more than 20 per cent attendance was in the winter session of 2017 — the penultimate session of his tenure.
Overall, Tendulkar asked just 22 questions — all in the years 2015 and 2016 — and did not participate in any debates. He was part of the standing committee on information technology.
Mary Kom’s record
Mary Kom joined Rajya Sabha in the second part of the budget session of 2016, and consequently registered an attendance figure of 7 per cent. However, she upped this figure to 70 per cent in the monsoon session, and improved it further to 76 per cent in the winter session.
In the first two sessions of 2017, Mary Kom registered 69 and 68 per cent attendance, before dropping off to 23 per cent in the winter session and 26 per cent in the budget session of 2018 — when she was training for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. In the monsoon session so far, her attendance is 75 per cent.
Mary Kom has featured in four debates under the head ‘matters raised with permission’, and is also a member of the standing committee on food, consumer affairs and public distribution. She hasn’t raised a question yet.