Indian Parliament’s 60th Anniversary: Speaker Meira Kumar praises citizens for success of democracy

Sunday, May 13, 2012
New Delhi: Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar said that the unflinching faith of the people of India in the cherished values of democracy forms the bedrock of our Parliamentary system. Speaking at the Special Sitting of Lok Sabha on the occasion of the 60th Anniversary of the first sitting of Parliament of India today, Meira Kumar said that that the common man and the neglected lot whose life is a saga of struggle for survival, toil day and night to make both ends meet and yet actively participate in the election process. The founding fathers of the Constitution established a parliamentary form of government to attain the noble ideals of justice, liberty and equality and human dignity and this august House has stood the test of the time and has made determined efforts in articulating and addressing the varied demands of our vast population, Kumar said.

Acknowledging with gratitude the invaluable contributions of all her illustrious predecessors,  Kumar said that it is obligatory for the public representatives to follow the directions of their respective parties and to live up to the expectations of their voters which is the parameter of success of their political career. But they should keep in mind that they have been elected to the Parliament of India and the history will assess their performance in that capacity. Notwithstanding their ideological differences, national interest should always be paramount for them, Kumar felt. This supreme deliberative institution has enacted much far reaching and revolutionary legislation for an egalitarian and progressive Indian society. It has kept pace with the changing times. To rise to the need of the hour it has enacted nearly 3400 legislations. During its arduous journey our Parliament has amended the Constitution 97 times including the landmark 73rd and 74th amendments passed by 10th Lok Sabha, she observed.

Lok Sabha Speaker said that Parliament’s engagement with people is the keystone of a vibrant democratic system. Each one of us, therefore, has the onerous responsibility of reinforcing peoples’ faith in our democratic institutions. We should, therefore, conform to the highest standards of democratic traditions and respond to the changing needs, ambitions and aspirations of the people, Meira Kumar observed. Stating that sixty years is not a very long period in the history of a nation, Kumar expressed the view that it is an occasion to recount our past experiences and visualize the challenges that lie ahead. It is a moment of introspection. It is time to foresee the future challenges. She also said that It is an irrefutable fact that democracy and caste system cannot go hand in hand since democracy is based on equality whereas the caste system is rooted in the gulf between the upper and lower strata of society. Out of these two systems one has to meet its extinction. Today when we are collectively glorifying the democracy with full zeal, we should also root out the caste system with all the might at our command, she said.

Observing that there are challenges galore in our future path, Kumar said that the journey so far has not been easy and smooth nor has it been a downward journey. She urged the Members of Parliament to resolve that the way ahead takes us to the new heights and India becomes strong and prosperous.
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