NEW DELHI: Against the backdrop of complete washout of the Winter Session of Parliament, the President, Ms Pratibha Patil today virtually asked the Government and the opposition to sort out issues so that it can function normally.
She also utilised the occasion of her address to the nation on the eve of Republic Day to highlight the issue of corruption which, she said, is “enemy of development and good governance” and sought “systemic changes” to the deal with the issue.
Ms Patil said the successful functioning of Parliament is a joint responsibility of the Government and the opposition and the dialogue among stake holders in democratic institution is an integral part of democratic working.
Her view on Parliament functioning comes more than a month after the Winter Session of Parliament was washed out following the deadlock between government and the opposition on the demand for setting up a Joint Parliamentary Committee to go into the 2G Spectrum scam.
“Parliament of the country is the repository of the sovereign will of the people, and its successful functioning is a joint responsibility of both the Government and the Opposition. “It is important that the decorum and dignity of the House is upheld at all times. The image of Parliament in the public mind should be one where proceedings, debates and discussions take place with a view to resolve issues through a constructive and co-operative approach,” she said.
Ms Patil said if it does not happen, people’s faith in democratic institutions can be affected, resulting in a feeling of despondency which is unacceptable in a healthy democracy, as it may derail democratic institutions.
“Hence, dialogue among stakeholders in democratic institutions is an integral part of democratic working,” she said.
The President said as a nation, the aim is to grow and create a just society. “Our goal of poverty eradication and of inclusive growth that embraces the disadvantaged and marginalised sections of society can be achieved when our actions are guided by a social conscience and are not devoid of sensitivity.
“We are seeking good governance and a people-centric administration,” she said and warned hat “callous and casual attitudes in the sphere of public service are unacceptable.”
“Corruption is the enemy of development and of good governance. Instead of getting lost in this mire, it is necessary to rise above it and seriously look at bringing systemic changes to deal more effectively with corruption.
“Financial institutions, the corporate world and civil society, all must uphold high standards of probity in their working. Only a genuine partnership between the Government and its people can bring about positive change to create a just society,” the President added.