New Delhi [India]: A total of 72 retiring members of the Rajya Sabha on Thursday had a group photo with Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu, Deputy Chairman Harivansh Narayan Singh, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla.
The event was organised before the Upper House bid farewell to the retiring members. Some of the members are retiring this month and some of them are retiring a little later.
The photo session is observed in line with the Parliamentary tradition.
Later, the Rajya Sabha will bid farewell to the retiring members and accordingly, Zero Hour and Question Hour, will not be taken up today.
Leaders of parties and others will also make farewell speeches in the Rajya Sabha soon after it assemble at 11 am on Thursday.
The Vice President of India, Venkaiah Naidu, will also host a dinner for the 72 retiring MPs at his official residence.
Voting for the 13 Rajya Sabha seats will take place today across six states. Five Rajya Sabha nominees of the Aam Admi Party (AAP) have already been elected to the Upper House unopposed on the back of the party sweeping the Assembly elections in the state recently.
The BJP nominee S Phangnon Konyak has also been elected to the Upper House unopposed from Nagaland. She will be the first woman member of the Rajya Sabha from Nagaland.
The BJP candidate Sikander Kumar has also been elected to the Rajya Sabha unopposed from Himachal Pradesh. With the BJP having 43 MLAs in the 68-member Himachal Pradesh Assembly, Congress hadn’t fielded candidate in the biennial polls for the Rajya Sabha.
For six other Rajya Sabha seats, voting is underway in Kerala, Tripura and Assam.
In Tripura, the ruling BJP has fielded state unit party chief Manik Saha while the Left Front has nominated senior CPI (M) leader Bhanu Lal Saha. Kerala will elect three members for the Rajya Sabha.
Incidentally, one-third of the members of the Rajya Sabha from each state retire every two years on the completion of their six-year terms. (ANI)