On the third day of the Budget Session, discussion on the Motion of Thanks to the President's Address began in Parliament. Speaking in Rajya Sabha, one Member welcomed the President's remarks. Noting that 11 crore toilets have been built in rural areas, the Member said that schemes like Swachch Bharat Abhiyan and PM Ujjwala have particularly improved the living conditions of rural women. Another Member stated that the President’s Address did not cover pressing issues like unemployment, price rise and income inequality in the country.
Following the President's Address and the Budget Presentation in the first two days of the session, Question Hour and Zero Hour commenced in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. In Rajya Sabha, the Women and Child Development Minister stated that requirement of written consent and the Aadhaar number of the husband will no longer be mandatory for women to avail benefits under Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana. Under the PMMVY, maternity benefits of ₹5,000 are provided in three installments to pregnant women and lactating mothers for their first child.
To another written question on regulating the ed-tech sector, the Minister of State for Education informed the House about an advisory issued in December. The advisory specifies that ed-tech companies are considered as e-commerce entities and must therefore comply with the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020. Under the Rules, all ed-tech companies must have a grievance officer who must acknowledge the receipt of any consumer complaint within 48 hours and redress the complaint within one month.
Proceedings were ongoing in Lok Sabha at the time of Updating this post.
Numbers to note
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry informed Lok Sabha that 264 start-ups have been recognised by the DPIIT in 2021 in the north-eastern states of Tripura, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Mizoram, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam. The 2021-22 Economic Survey on Monday noted that the government recognized 14,000 new startups in 2021.