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Parliament passes Advocates Amendment Bill on first day of Winter Session; Rajya Sabha clears Post Office Bill

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The Winter Session of Parliament began today. On the first day of Session, the Parliament passed the Advocates (Amendment) Bill, 2023 with Lok Sabha giving assent to it today. The Rajya Sabha had passed the Bill in August this year during the Monsoon Session of Parliament.
The Bill amends the Advocates Act, 1961. The legislation repeals certain sections related to touts under the Legal Practitioners Act, 1879. It provides that every High Court, district judge, sessions judge, district magistrate, and revenue officer not below the rank of a district collector, can frame and publish lists of touts. Tout refers to a person who either proposes to procure or procures the employment of a legal practitioner in a legal business in return for any payment.

Under the legislation, the Court or judge may exclude from the premises of the Court any person whose name is included in the list of touts.
Replying to the debate on the Bill,  Minister for Law and Justice Arjun Ram Meghwal said, the colonial Act was without any utility and that’s why it has been repealed. The Minister said, one thousand 486 such laws have been done away with.  

Initiating the discussion, Karti Chidambaram of Congress welcomed the bill. Participating in the discussion, Kalyan Banerjee of TMC raised the large number of pending cases in courts. Supriya Sule of NCP, Malook Nagar of BSP and Jagdambika Pal of BJP were among others who participated in the debate.
Earlier moving the Bill, Mr Meghwal said that the legislation aims to clear the premises of courts from touts. Earlier, the Central Universities (Amendment) Bill, 2023 was introduced in the Lok Sabha. Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan introduced the Bill in the House. The Bill seeks to amend the Central Universities Act, 2009 for the establishment of a Central University namely Sammakka Sarakka Central Tribal University in Telangana. It will promote advanced knowledge by providing instructional and research facilities in tribal art, culture and customs in the country.

Rajya Sabha today passed the Post Office Bill 2023 after detailed discussion. The Post Office Bill 2023 replaces the Indian Post Office Act, 1898. As per the provisions of the bill, the government may intercept an article transmitted through India Post on specified grounds, including the security of the state and public order. India Post will not incur any liability with regard to its services, except any liability prescribed through Rules. The government will not have exclusive privilege over conveying letters.

Replying to the debate on the bill, Union Minister for Communication Ashwini Vaishnaw said that the bill has been brought to expand the postal services network in the country.

Earlier Congress MP Shakti Singh Gohil initiated the discussion on the bill and alleged that the government wants to encourage the private sector only. Aam Aadmi Party Raghav Chaddha opposed the bill and said that this bill will give the government the right to read anyone’s letter in the name of security.
Later the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha were adjourned for the day. 

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