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Manmohan Singh hopes budget session will be peaceful, productive

New Delhi, Mon, 12 Mar 2012 ANI

New Delhi, Mar 12 (ANI): The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, on Monday expressed the hope that proceedings during parliament's budget session would be peaceful, smooth and result-oriented.


"I sincerely hope that this session of parliament will move smoothly. I appeal to all political parties to cooperate with the government in broadways consensus," Dr. Singh told reporters before entering parliament.


"Pressure is part of the parliamentary system. We are ready to discuss all issues on the floor of parliament. I am confident that we have all the numbers that we need," he added.


The first part of the budget session of parliament begins today and lasts till March 31. It will include an address to a joint session of parliament by President Pratibha Devisingh Patil at 11 a.m.


The Railway Budget for fiscal 2012-13 will be presented on March 14, while the General Budget for the same period will be presented on March 16. The Economic Survey, which outlines the government's assessment of the economy, will be tabled on March 15.


The second part of the budget session of parliament will be from April 24 to May 22.


Observers have predicted rough times ahead for the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) II Government from the opposition on various issues, including the recent ban on cotton exports, the alleged dilution of federal structure through the establishment of the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), controversial amendments to the Railway Protection Force Act and many other issues.


The opposition could also target the government on the Lokpal Bill.


Congress allies like the Trinamool Congress (TMC) have publicly expressed their opposition on the setting up of the NCTC, the hike of fuel prices, the fertilizer subsidy and the financial constraints experienced by its government in West Bengal.


On Sunday, BJP Parliamentary Party and NDA floor leaders in both Houses of Parliament held separate meetings to discuss strategy to be adopted against the UPA-II Government during the budget session.


The BJP also informed that it will discontinue its boycott of Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram during the budget session, as it was felt that there was a need to get answers from the latter on serious matters like the NCTC and the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Prevention of Unlawful Act. (ANI)


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