LS speaker chairs meeting on arrangements for Monsoon Session, social distancing
New Delhi: Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Friday chaired a meeting of officials from both Houses of Parliament, the health ministry, the DRDO and other agencies to finalise arrangements for the upcoming Monsoon Session in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Monsoon Session of Parliament is likely to start from September 14 and conclude on October 1.
“Seating arrangement in both Houses (Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha) will be based on guidelines of the health ministry on COVID-19. Comprehensive arrangements have been made for holding the session,” Birla said after the meeting.
All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Director Dr Randip Guleria, Director General, Indian Council of Medical Research, Balram Bhargav and Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan, among others, were present in the meeting.
The speaker had also held a meeting with the secretary generals of the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha on Thursday.
He had said that his priority was to ensure smooth functioning of Parliament during the session. Guidelines pertaining to social distancing will be adhered to during the session, Birla had said.
In a series of posts from the Lok Sabha speaker’s Twitter handle, Birla had informed that he had chaired a meeting on Thursday to review the preparations for the upcoming Monsoon Session and had directed all agencies concerned to work diligently for sanitisation and other arrangements.
He had also shared a video of the meeting with officials from the secretariats of both Houses — Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.
“Necessary protocols are being prepared for members and their staff. Guidelines are also being formulated for Parliament officials. All guidelines pertaining to social distancing will be adhered to during session,” the speaker had said in one of the tweets.
The Lok Sabha Secretariat, the nodal agency for the Parliament complex, has been making necessary preparations and modifications in the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha chambers to ensure social distancing.
Sources said Birla also told officials to make adequate arrangements for seating of parliamentarians while maintaining social distancing.
Lok Sabha Secretary General Snehlata Srivastava and Rajya Sabha Secretary General Desh Deepak Verma briefed Birla about the ongoing preparations.
Will request MPs to get tested for coronavirus 72 hours before start of Monsoon Session: LS Speaker
New Delhi: MPs will be requested to get themselves tested for COVID-19 at least 72 hours before the start of the Monsoon Session of Parliament, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said on Friday.
The Monsoon Session is likely to start from September 14 and conclude on October 1.
Besides MPs, all those who are expected to enter the Parliament premises, including officials from ministries, representatives from the media and staff of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha secretariats, will get tested for the coronavirus before the start of the session, Birla said.
The Lok Sabha speaker on Friday held a long meeting with officials from the health ministry, ICMR, AIIMS, DRDO and Delhi government to finalise the arrangements for the session in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Birla said arrangements have also been made for zero-touch security checks during the session.
If required random tests for COVID-19 can be conducted during the session, he said.
Sources said the Monsoon Session is likely to be held in two shifts — morning and evening.
Due to the pandemic, this will be in a way a first-of-its-kind session with various modifications.