Monsoon session: Lok Sabha worked only 12% of time

The Lok Sabha lost 88 per cent of its sitting time to adjournments in the first 10 days of the 16-day monsoon session, clocking barely 7.42 hours of actual sittings until 22 August.

A disturbed government considered an extension of the session, which is imperative to the passage of several important pending bills, says a Times of India report.

Normally, when the Lok Sabha is in session, it sits for six hours a day. The sitting hours are calculated minus the lunch break. This monsoon session, till 22 August, the lower house spent only 38 minutes on legislation and 50 minutes on question hour over its 10 sittings, data compiled by PRS Legislative Research shows. Not one of the seven bills introduced in the Lok Sabha has so far been passed.

The 52:58 lost hours over 10 sittings this session lost have surpassed the time lost to adjournments during the monsoon sessions of 2010 (45 hours) and 2011 (51.06 hours). With just five days to go, including the working Saturday today, before the current session winds up, the 14th session of the 15th Lok Sabha may end up as a washout unless extended.

The lower house's poor productivity is in sharp contrast with the functioning of the Rajya Sabha this session. The upper house clocked 80 per cent productive hours over its 10 sittings since 5 August. It sat for 40.17 hours of the total 50 hours of sitting available over the period. It lost only 9.83 hours to adjournments.

As many as 10 bills were introduced in the Rajya Sabha. Seven of them were passed until 22 August. So much so, that unlike the Lok Sabha which will work on Saturday, the Rajya Sabha is not sitting since no bill has been relayed to it by the lower House.

The government is now considering introducing some key pending bills in the Rajya Sabha rather than the Lok Sabha, says the report.

The efficiency with which the Rajya Sabha has conducted business this session prompted Congress president Sonia Gandhi to ask Arun Jaitley, leader of the opposition in the Rajya Sabha, the "secret" behind the upper house's smooth functioning when they met at the at-home hosted by President Pranab Mukherjee on Independence Day.