A Peoples’ Parliament to fill a vacuum in Indian public and political discourse?
Media Briefing on Janta Parliament – August 16-21 2020 10:00 – 18:00
13 August 2020 | 2:30pm onwards
The Budget Session of Parliament was curtailed due to the sudden imposition of the lockdown and since then the Parliament has not been in session. In these unprecedented times, countries across the world have adapted to conducting virtual and online sessions with the understanding that the Parliament cannot stop representing the people and keeping a check on the executive.
In India, with Parliament Committees not being functional for most of the duration of the ill prepared lockdown period, there have been several far-reaching and controversial policy decisions taken by the government that have escaped any kind of legislative scrutiny or representative accountability, which can only be ensured by Parliament.
As per media reports, the Monsoon Session of Parliaments, ordinarily scheduled to begin in the last week of July is not likely to be convened soon. In the absence of parliamentary oversight, concerned citizens, civil society organizations and people’s campaigns have decided to come together to convene a Janta Parliament to discuss urgent policy related concerns that have emerged from the global COVID -19 pandemic, affecting the socio-economic and political lives of all citizens of the country, but especially the most vulnerable and marginalized.
The Janta Parliament aims to fill this vacuum in public and political discourse, by convening a group of experts, practitioners, students as well as voices from the ground from diverse backgrounds and experiences, to set a policy agenda for our political representatives when they convene for the Monsoon Session of Parliament.
The Janta Parliament has been organized as a virtual gathering over a period of 6 days between 16 August 2020 – 21 August 2020 and will cover 10 thematic sessions on Health, Food Security and Nutrition, Education, Environment, Agriculture, Economy, Industry Labour and Employment, Technology and Surveillance, Impact on Vulnerable Communities, and Civil Liberties, Laws and Governance.
( Detailed concept note and schedule here)
We invite you to be part of this 6 day programme and request your help in presenting the concerns, experiences, suggestions and recommendations that are revealed as a part of this participatory process.
To introduce this event we have organized a virtual press briefing on 13 August 2020, from 2:30pm onwards during which some of the coordinators for the Janta Parliament and experts speaking at the Janta Parliament will discuss the rationale behind the Janta Parliament, overall expectations, the follow-ups from it and thematically highlight some of the pressing COVID-19 centric issues that will be discussed over the period of six days.
The speakers who will be present at the press briefing include Kavita Srivastav (People’s Union for Civil Liberties), Nikhil Dey (Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan), Maansi Verma (Maadhyam), Abhay Shukla (Jan Swasthya Abhiyan), Ashish Kothari (Kalpavriksh / Vikalp Sangam), Vijoo Krishnan (All India Kisan Sabha) and Jayati Ghosh.
Date: 13 August 2020
Time: 2:30 onwards
For further details (such as Zoom link to join this press conference) write to us at jansarokar2019