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Camp : Patna, 17 February 2018 : Hon’ble Lok Sabha Speaker, Smt. Sumitra Mahajan today inaugurated the 6th Conference of CPA India Region in Gyan Bhawan, Patna. She said that the land of Lord Buddha, Mahavir, Ashoka, Chankaya, Acharya Nagarjun, Aryabhatt, Bhaskaracharya, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Shri Jai Prakash Narayan and Shri Ramdhari Singh Dinkar, has progressed and grown under the dynamic leadership of Chief Minister of Bihar, Shri Nitish Kumar. She appreciated his political acumen, insight and popularity with the people of Bihar. Delivering her Inaugural Address, Smt. Mahajan said that each and every organ of democracy is accountable towards the people in some or the other way. Executive is accountable to people through Legislature. Judiciary is also accountable to people as the custodian of rights of people, it is important responsibility of the Judiciary to protect the Constitution. The system of checks and balances is thus very important for the functioning of any vibrant democracy. Smt. Mahajan observed that the development agenda of India reflects the aspirations of SDGs. As people’s representatives, we need to play a significant role in achieving SDGs. For this, party politics should come in the way of development. And, the leader, at the helm of affairs should be one who understands the pulse of the people and works only for their welfare and happiness. Parliamentarians, as such, can help to accelerate the implementation of these goals through laws, debates, and by actively participating in events like Seminars, Workshops and Conferences. It is our responsibility as legislators to ensure that the governmental policies and programmes reach each and every section of society and to achieve that, the legislators need to create awareness of such policies among people. In this context, she referred to the Speaker’s Research Initiative (SRI) in Parliament which provides a platform to the parliamentarians to engage with domain experts. The objective is not only to enhance to quality of debates and discussions in the House but also to disseminate information and explain the complicated subjects by direct interaction with the subject experts. The Chief Guest, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Bihar, Shri Nitish Kumar said that Parliament plays a bigger in development through legislations. He referred to the 17 SDGs like poverty, health, education, gender equality, climate change and social justice and noted that all these goals are kept in mind for the development of Bihar. He recalled Gandhji’s contribution in Champaran Satyagraha for farmers and for motivating people for cleanliness, education and health. Shri Nitish Kumar said that women constitute half of the population and today, we talk about gender equality, but it was long ago that Gandhi ji had envisioned empowering them. He informed the Delegates that the women reservation in Panchayats and Local Bodies in Bihar has increased from 33 to 50 percent, which has brought a remarkable change in the society. He urged to pass the Women Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha so that adequate reservation is given to women in Legislatures and Parliament. This will facilitate empowerment of women in a big way and also the potential and innovation of women will help in the development of nation. He delineated several schemes initiated by the Government of Bihar for the progress and prosperity of its people Participating in the event, Hon’ble Deputy Chief Minister of Bihar, Shri Sushil Kumar Modi said that since 2005, the assets of the people’s representatives are available on the website and with Supreme Court’s ruling that all those who are contesting the elections will have to declare their assets and liabilities, will enhance the credibility of the Legislatures and bring further transparency, he added. Speaking on the occasion, the Chairperson of CPA Hon’ble Emilia M. Lifaka thanked India CPA Branch for the multifaceted support that led to her election as Chairperson of the CPA. She observed that development means improvement of an existing situation. Each of our countries has a development plan which acts as a road map that defines the kind of development trajectory that they aspire to. Development to succeed must be people centred and the people must be part of developmental agenda. This is not only participatory; it is also a guarantee of inclusiveness, she said. Mrs. Lifaka underlined that SDGs are aspirations of what we want to achieve for all our people in the world. Thus, as legislators, we need to ensure that the SDGs are ratified by the Parliament; they are popularized; and are aligned with national goals. In our oversight world, we need to monitor their implementation as well as ensure appropriate budgeting for such commitments and put in place legislation where necessary to facilitate the implementation of such goals, she added. Earlier, welcoming the dignitaries, the Hon’ble Speaker, Bihar Vidhan Sabha, Shri Vijay Kumar Choudhary said that CPA’s 52 members with 150 national and political branches has 70,000 parliamentarians participating from across the globe. It works to share and strengthen constitutional, legislative and social knowledge and goodwill within the framework of parliamentary democracy. He shared that a programme of direct interaction has been started with the legislators and organizations of the civil society and referred to various workshops and seminars organised on gender equality, child labour and the responsibilities and duties of the legislators. Later in the afternoon, the Conference deliberated on the themes of the Plenary Sessions at Bihar Vidhan Sabha. Dr. Murli Manohar Joshi, Hon’ble Estimates Committee (Lok Sabha) delivered the key note address on the theme “Parliament’s role in the development agenda”. The second key note address was delivered by Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister of Law and Justice & Electronics and Information Technology on the theme “Legislature and Judiciary – two important pillars of Democracy”. Subsequently, several delegates participated on the Plenary agenda.



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