RS Chairman Dhankhar, PM Modi to lead Central Hall function today

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New Delhi: Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla will lead a function in the Central Hall of Parliament on Tuesday to celebrate the country's rich parliamentary legacy and resolve to make India a developed nation by 2047.

The nearly one-and-a-half hour function will start and end with the national anthem and would be followed by a lunch. Later, the top leaders will lead all MPs to the new Parliament building.

"Members of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha are requested to assemble in the Central Hall of Parliament at 11 A.M. on 19.09.2023 for a function to commemorate the rich legacy of the Parliament of India and resolve to make Bharat a developed Nation by 2047," a Rajya Sabha bulletin said.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi will deliver the welcome address at the Central hall function, and veteran parliamentarians will also speak on the occasion.

Sources said BJP MP Maneka Gandhi, who is also the senior most Lok Sabha member, will be the first speaker. Former prime minister Manmohan Singh has been approached to deliver an address at the function after Maneka Gandhi, but sources close to him said Singh has not been keeping well for some time and may not be present.

The function will also see the address of veteran Parliamentarian Shibu Soren, whose combined Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha experience is more than any other member.

Leader of the House in Rajya Sabha Piyush Goyal, Leader of the Opposition in the Upper House Mallikarjun Kharge, and Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury will also speak on the occasion.

The prime minister is also expected to take a copy of the Constitution to the central hall of Parliament during the function, the sources said.

Before the Central Hall function, three separate group photographs -- first of MPs from both Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha, second of RS members and third of LS members -- would be taken at the inner courtyard of the old Parliament building.

Lok Sabha proceedings will begin at 1.15 pm, while Rajya Sabha will meet at 2.15 pm in the new building.

Senior union ministers Piyush Goyal and Pralhad Joshi monitored the arrangements for the function personally and held consultations with the officials. They visited the central hall after the meeting of the union cabinet.

The start of proceedings in the new Parliament building is happening on the day of Ganesh Chaturthi, which is considered auspicious for any new beginning. PTI

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