New Delhi , January 29 : Terming the Opposition parties' boycott of President Ram Nath Kovind's address to the joint sitting of two houses of Parliament on the first day of Budget Session as "unfortunate", Minister of State (MoS) for Parliamentary Affairs Arjun Ram Meghwal on Friday appealed to the leaders of opposition parties to attend the address.
"President's address to Parliament is a non-political thing. The opposition should attend it. It is unfortunate that they have decided to boycott it," Meghwal told ANI. Meanwhile, Giriraj Singh, Union Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Bihar's Begusarai said that the Opposition is shredding the dignity of democracy by not attending the President's address.
"They are shredding the dignity of democracy. In the Parliamentary system, President has his own dignity and boycotting his address is insulting him," Singh said on being asked about Opposition parties announcing their boycott of the President's address at Parliament.
Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Amit Shah has arrived at the Parliament to attend the Budget Session.
A total of 16 political parties including--Congress, NCP, J-K National Conference, DMK, AITC, Shiv Sena, Samajwadi Party, RJD, CPI (M), CPI, IUML, RSP, PDP, MDMK, Kerala Congress (M) and AIUDF-- in a joint statement on Thursday announced that they will boycott the President's address in the Parliament to register their protest against the three farm laws.
Apart from these 16 parties, BSP, AAP and SAD have also announced that they will also boycott the President's address.
The Budget Session will begin today with an address by President Ram Nath Kovind to Parliament.
The first part of the session will continue till February 15. The second part of the session will be held from March 8 to April 8.
Rajya Sabha will function from 9 am to 2 pm and Lok Sabha from 4 pm to 9 pm with Zero Hour and Question Hour.