82nd Presiding Officer conference begins in Shimla with PM address 

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Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, with Chief Minister JaiRam Thakur and other dignitaries during inauguration of the 82nd All India presiding officers conference
By ML Verma 
Shimla, Nov 17
Two days, Presiding Officers Conference began at the historic Council Chamber of Himachal Pradesh Vidhan Sabha with the inaugural address of Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Wednesday.
The Inauguration function of the conference was attended by the Lok Sabha Speaker,
Om Prakash Birla, Vice Chairman of Rajya Sabha Harivansh Narayan Singh, Governor
of Himachal Pradesh Rajendra Vishwanath Arlekar and Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur,
leader of Opposition Mukesh Agnihotri among 36 Speakers, Deputy Speakers ,Chairmen and Vice-chairmen of state legislative assembly and councils including all the members of Parliament & Assembly of Himachal Pradesh and former state assembly speakers and deputy speakers.
Addressing the conference virtually from New Delhi, the Prime minister greeted the presiding officer and said that the conference being attended by the number of speakers, deputy speakers, Chairman and vice chairman of Parliament, Assemblies and legislative council would deliberate for two days, as how to improve the quality of debates, discussions and sharing of ideas among members of various political parties going above party lines.
Greeting the participants to join the conference being held after a gap, Modi said that this conference should become historic as the country is also celebrating 75 yrs of Independence as Amrit Uttsav.
Modi emphasised that the presiding officers should also evolve a special and new debate in the parliament and assemblies during sessions, in which non political discussion could be held above the party lines and some learned and experienced members who are known for serving public welfare with great repute could share their views to add more value to deliberations and debates.
He said that such type of debates should be of allotted an hour or two, in addition to the scheduled proceedings in each session. Such new type of debate would prove beneficial to the new members and public at large.
PM said that the Parliament and assembly reflect the diversity of a democracy which should be also weaved into the uniformity or oneness (Aikrupta) as diversity in the legislative culture should be celebrated as a grand legacy, at the same time uniformity should be there to ensure Unity of the Nation to further strengthen democratic institutions like Parliament and Assembly.
A large number of new members enter as freshers who bring new youngness in the
functioning of parliamentary democracy and enrich such bodies with their enthusiasm
learning and adopting new aspects.
Modi said that the presiding officers conference would ensure that new legislations and policies are also debated in the session above the party-lines to restore the faith of people in the functioning of the legislature, besides it would help to accelerate the process of development in the country.
He hoped that Presiding officers would think and also resolve emerging challenges before
the current parliamentary functioning as it would help to accelerate the process of strengthening the democratic set up in the country.
Prime minister also stressed the need for more digitalisation of assemblies. libraries and debates and records of parliamentary institutions which could be exchanged between different state assemblies as learnings to promote the quality of legislative proceedings and its benefit to the public at large.
The conference began at 0930 hrs with welcome speech of Himachal Pradesh Assembly speaker Vipin Singh Parmar, leader of Opposition Mukesh Agnihotri, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur,  Vice Chairman of Rajya Sabha Harivansh Narayan Singh and Lok Sabha Speaker,
Om Prakash Birla.
Himachal Pradesh state assembly is simultaneously hosting the presiding officials conference which is being attended by the Principal Secretaries and other senior officials Lok and Rajya Sabha, Secretary Vidhan Sabha and Vidhan Mandal began on Nov 16 in the state assembly complex.

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