New Delhi: President Pranab Mukherjee Monday unveiled the photographs of the presidents of the central legislative assembly and the portraits of former Lok Sabha speakers at the Parliament House.

“Indian parliament is the ‘Gangotri’ of our democracy. It represents the will and the aspirations of one billion-plus people and is the link between the people and the government,” Mukherjee said.

“If Gangotri gets polluted, neither Ganga nor any of its tributaries can stay unpolluted,” he said.

“It is incumbent upon all parliamentarians that they maintain the highest standards of democracy and parliamentary functioning,” Mukherjee added.

The president also said that parliament, like other organs of the government, is not sovereign and “owes its origin and authority to the constitution”.

“The prime function of parliament is to enact legislations to empower the people on every front – social, economic and political; to exercise control over executive and making it accountable in all respects,” he said.

“The validity of a law, whether union or state, is tested by judiciary as defined in the constitution,” Mukherjee added.

He said that parliament functions through debate, dissension and decision and not through disruption.

“In order to strengthen our parliamentary functioning and other democratic institutions, it is important that all stakeholders – government, political parties, their leaders and parliamentarians do some introspection and follow sound parliamentary conventions and rules,” he said.

While unveiling the photographs and portraits at the Central Hall of parliament, Mukherjee also said that these portraits and photographs will be a reminder of duties and responsibilities.

“I am sure, the photographs and portraits will always remind us of discharging our duties and responsibilities for which we have sought mandate from the people, and inspire us to earnestly strive to establish a progressive, vibrant and healthy democracy,” he added.

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Free Press Journal