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IIDL Model Parliament discusses renaming Aligarh as Harigarh, condemns ban on The Kerala Story, passes NRC


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The sixth edition of the IIDL Model Parliament was held on 17th and 18th May, 2023, at the RMP-KEC campus in Uttan, Thane, in presence of Eatala Rajender, MLA Huzurabad & former Finance Minister of Telangana, and Siddesh Shripad Naik, Chairperson of North Goa zilla panchayat as the speakers.

The IIDL Model Parliament was a simulation of the actual Indian Parliament and involved 30 students from the Indian Institute of Democratic Leadership’s (IIDL) Post Graduate Programme in Leadership Politics and Governance. The students were divided in to the ruling and opposition and debated accordingly. The students recreated the look and feel of a real parliament during the event through their debates and speeches. Parliamentary business such as the oath-taking ceremony for new members, question hour, calling attention motion, and bills were also conducted. These activities provided the participants with a practical understanding of parliamentary functioning.

The calling attention motion was made on two specific topics: The proposal to rename Aligarh to Harigarh, and the ongoing riots in Manipur. Furthermore, the list of business conducted during the Model Parliament session included the introduction and tabling of three bills. The first bill was the National Register of Citizens (NRC), which aimed to establish a comprehensive citizenship database. The second bill was the finance bill or the budget while 33 percent youth reservation in parliament was the third bill.

Both the calling attention on renaming of Aligarh and the NRC saw strong views and heated arguments from both the sides. The students debated the history of Aligarh with historical evidences of it being called Harigarh during the calling attention motion. Siddhesh Shripad Naik, who specially travelled from Goa to chair the model parliament, said, “I am happy to chair this model parliament. I appreciate the quality of debates and discussions made by the young students. Even I taking back a thing or two from this experience”.

Devendra Pai, Course Director of IIDL added, “IIDL is a unique institution which is working among the youth and inculcating democratic values amongst them. Model Parliament is a platform to gain practical experience in parliamentary proceedings, drafting bills and understanding and debating pressing issues”.

“I have learnt so many new things from the time I have joined IIDL, and it was the same with regards to the Model Parliament. It was an honour to represent the Home Minister as it was a big responsibility to live up to the expectations set by the current national home minister”, said Divyam Agarwal, who hails from Chhattisgarh and was the Home Minister in the model parliament.

Prince Tiwari, who was the Minister of Culture at the Model Parliament added, “It was an enriching experience. I learnt how laws are made in this country. Even while speaking, I realised that the speech must be well researched with no room for the opposition to find fault – each word has to be carefully chosen”.

Sonakshi Datta
Sonakshi Datta
Journalist who wants to cover the truth which others look the other way from.

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