Parliament should sit for 110 days a year, says Meira Kumar


New Delhi : The Indian parliament’s sittings should be increased to 110 days a year, Speaker Meira Kumar said Saturday.

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“We should increase the number of sittings (of parliament) to 110 days,” the speaker told reporters here, adding that “disruption of the house proceedings is a major concern for everybody”.

She said that bigger state assemblies in the country should also convene for 110 days a year. Meira Kumar said the matter was discussed in the recent state parliamentary affairs ministers’ meeting.

In 2008, both houses of parliament met for 46 days each, the lowest since 1952.

On austerity measures, the speaker said she has suggested that meetings of the various parliament standing committees should be held in Delhi.

“All committee meetings should be held in Delhi,” the speaker said. But she added that the old system of meeting anywhere in the country could be renewed after the austerity measures of the government are over.

Meira Kumar said she is not planning to ask MPs to observe austerity, but added that she was in “favour of voluntary gestures”.

“It is up to them (whether to observe austerity or not),” said the speaker, who herself flew from New Delhi to Patna economy class on Friday.

Meanwhile, Meira Kumar said that Parliament House had “become old” and was being used by far more people than it was earlier estimated, and a high-level committee had been formed for the maintenance of the heritage building.

The presiding officer also that she had spoken to Lok Sabha House Committee Chairman Jai Prakash Agarwal to provide houses to the newly-elected ministers and MPs soon.