M A I N   N E W S

On last day, Punjab House clears 16 Bills in 80 minutes
Sanjeev Singh Bariana/TNS

Chandigarh, March 25
The Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Monday passed 16 important Bills on the last day of the budget session without a discussion worth a mention. The Bills were discussed and cleared in about 80 minutes, giving each Bill just about five minutes on an average.

Even Bills to which certain members raised objections were pushed through after completing the formality of having allowed them to speak a few words.

Initiating discussion on the Punjab State Cancer and Drug Addiction Treatment Infrastructure Fund Bill, 2013, certain MLAs’ objected to implementation of the cancer relief programme. Senior BJP leader Manorajan Kalia said cancer patients were facing problems in hospitals due to procedural flaws in getting their bills cleared from the government.

Health Minister Madan Mohan Mittal replied, ”The government has empanelled hospitals across the state to offer over 70 cancer-specific medicines at 90 per cent concession. Their prices have to be openly displayed. Doctors have been instructed to commence treatment immediately after a patient comes in and ask for settlement of dues later.”

Ludhiana (South) MLA Balwinder Bains, while speaking on the Bill concerning Municipal Corporations, urged the government to install reverse osmosis (RO) systems like the ones installed in Bathinda to supply clean water to residents of Ludhiana. Senior SAD leader Tota Singh came down heavily on the Punjab Community Participation in Municipalities Bill, 2013, saying “it will be tough to demarcate the role of councillors, area sabhas and ward committees in case the Bill was approved. Instead of simplifying the job, these will lead to complications in civil administration”. Justice Nirmal Singh said the Bill to ‘prohibit ragging’ lacked in clarity, particularly with respect to constitution of action committees. Speaking on the Bill on prison amendments, Kalia said it was a contradiction that jails were contemplating action against prisoners in possession of mobiles while guards were being let off. Kalia also spoke on the government giving “easy” regularisation certificates to illegal colonies. The Punjab Urban Development Authority (PUDA) has the law but it has not been implemented till date, he added. Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal said regularising illegal colonies also signals the introduction of a new Bill shortly, which will provide strict action against all illegal dwellings.

Stamp of approval

1- The Punjab Motor Vehicles Taxation (Amendment) Bill, 2013

2- The Punjab State Cancer and Drug Addiction Treatment Infrastructure Fund Bill, 2013

3- The Punjab Municipal Corporation (Amendment) Bill 2013

4- The Punjab Community Participation in Municipalities Bill, 2013

5- The Punjab Rent (Amendment) Bill, 2013

6- The Punjab State Election Commission (Amendment) Bill, 2013

7- The Punjab Ancient, Historical Monuments, Archaeological Sites and Cultural Heritage Maintenance Board Bill, 2013

8- The Punjab Contract Farming Bill, 2013

9- The Punjab Co-operative Societies (Amendment) Bill, 2013

10- The prisons (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2013

11- The Punjab Educational Institutions (Prohibition of Ragging) Bill, 2013

12- The Punjab laws (Special Provisions) Bill, 2013

13- The Punjab Lokpal (Amendment) Bill, 2013

14- The Punjab Lokpal (second amendment) Bill, 2013





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