Tribune News Service
New Delhi, July 22
The government on Thursday introduced two bills in the Lok Sabha amid din over Pegasus row and farmers’ issues.
Shipping and Ports Minister Sarbanand Sonowal introduced the Inland Vessels Bill, 2021, to promote transport through inland waters, safety of navigation, protection of life and cargo and prevention of pollution. The bill also seeks to ensure transparency of administration of inland water among other things.
56 Air India staffers died due to Covid
- The government on Thursday informed the Lok Sabha that 56 Air India employees have died due to Covid-19 till July 14.
- Responding to a written question, MoS for Civil Aviation VK Singh said, “In all, 3,523 Air India employees were affected by Covid and 56 of them succumbed to the virus till July 14.”
- Kin of each deceased permanent employee were given Rs10 lakh as compensation, while each fixed-term contractual employee’s family got Rs5 lakh. — TNS
Presiding officer of the LS at the time Bhartruhari Mahtab called out the names of Opposition MPs, who had objected to the introduction of the bill, but some were absent and others not in their seats to flag concerns as they were protesting in the well. These Congress MPs were K Suresh, Manish Tewari, Heibi Eden, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury and MK Raghavan.
RSP’s NK Premchandran opposed the introduction of the Essential Defence Services Bill, 2021, saying it seeks to prohibit the workers’ legitimate right to strike guaranteed under the Indian industrial laws and the ILO conventions.
“This bill seeks to cut down democratic rights of workers. Why introduce it when the house is not in order?” Premchandran asked. Other MPs who had given notices to oppose this bill were not in their seats — including Congress’ Manish Tewari, Adhir Ranjan, Gaurav Gogoi and Shashi Tharoor and TMC’s Saugata Roy.
MoS Defence Ajay Bhatt while introducing the bill said Premachandran’s concerns were baseless. “There is no intention in the bill to trouble anyone. Interests of workers have been fully protected,” Bhatt said introducing his first bill after being recently inducted into the council of ministers.
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