The discussion on Motion of Thanks to the President's Address continued for the third day in Rajya Sabha. The Prime Minister is expected to respond to the debate on Monday.
Participating in the discussion today, the Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare said that the government is open to discussing amendments to the farm laws. He stressed that farmers’ lands could not be taken away from them under the contract farming law.
Separately to a question about reduced allocation of funds to the PM-KISAN scheme, the Minister clarified that though the government had estimated the number of beneficiaries to be 14.5 crore, only 10.75 crore farmers have been registered until now. The budget estimate for the scheme stood at Rs 75,000 crore in 2020-21 while this year’s budget allocation is Rs 65,000 crore.
One Member taking part in the discussion asked the Parliament to take notice of the long pendency of constitutional matters in the Supreme Court and urged that they be decided immediately.
In Lok Sabha, questions were put to the Health Minister on the COVID-19 vaccines before the House adjourned to meet later. It was subsequently adjourned for the day. Lok Sabha is yet to take up the discussion on the Motion of Thanks to the President's Address.
The Committee on Finance presented its report on the Factoring Regulation (Amendment) Bill, 2020 this week. The bill seeks to widen the scope of entities which can engage in the factoring business.
Numbers to note
The Health Minister informed Lok Sabha that 22 countries have requested COVID-19 vaccines from India. 56 lakh doses have been provided in the form of grants and 105 lakh doses in the form of contracted doses in more than 15 of these countries, as of Feb 2.