New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Wednesday warned his party MPs against skipping Parliamentary proceedings, aiming his directive at both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha MPs.
Modi was speaking at his first BJP parliamentary party meeting since the Covid-19 outbreak last year.
“It does not seem nice to remind you again and again that you have to be present in Parliament. Those MPs assigned duties in poll-bound states can be exempted but others have a duty to attend Parliament seriously,” a BJP MP present at the meeting quoted the PM as having said.
“He asked MPs present in the House to take Parliament work seriously,” the MP added.
Sources present in the meeting said much of the prime minister’s address and the general theme of the meeting revolved around the central government’s efforts at combatting the pandemic, especially the vaccination programme.
A second MP present at the meeting confirmed to ThePrint that Modi wanted them to set up help desks in their constituencies for the vaccination process.
“He suggested that we start help desks in our constituencies to facilitate the vaccination process,” the MP said. “He also suggested that we spread the word about the vaccination process and iron out any misgivings about the vaccine.”
The MP also said that the prime minister expressed satisfaction at the speed of the vaccination process. “He mentioned the hardships that the government faced during Covid and said that it was now the duty of MPs to help with the vaccination programme,” the second MP added.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi also told reporters after the meeting that Modi had sought the MPs’ help.
“The PM has given MPs the task to assist in the Covid vaccination programme,” Joshi said. “It is now the duty of MPs to ensure they reach the vaccination centres and ensure people are getting vaccinated.”
‘Nadda urges MPs to ensure CoWin registration’
BJP MP from Arunachal Pradesh Tapir Gao told ThePrint that party president J.P. Nadda told MPs to help people with registering on the CoWin portal and the Arogya Setu app.
“He asked MPs to ensure clean drinking water at vaccination centres and ensure priority for the old,” Gao said. “He also tasked MPs with sharing photos of eminent people being vaccinated to encourage others to take the shots.”
Another MP said that the prime minister underlined the government’s efforts to hold a commemorative Dandi March on 12 March, as part of efforts to mark the 75th year of Independence, which falls next year.
Modi is expected to flag off the 21-day long Dandi March from Abhay Ghat, the resting place of late Prime Minister Morarji Desai near Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram, thus launching the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav celebrations.
The government is also planning to hold 75-week-long events at 75 places as part of the celebrations. The MP said Modi told the Parliamentarians that the culture ministry was holding these events and urged them to attend them at their respective states.
(Edited by Arun Prashanth)
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