New Delhi, Aug 5: What does the Parliament stand for? To champion democracy or to make a mockery of it? An analysis has said that as many as 92 of the 545 current Lok Sabha members have actually attended less than 50 per cent of the House proceedings (which is nearly 17 per cent of the total members).
What is even more startling is that none of the Congress's top two leaders, Sonia Gandhi (48 per cent) and Rahul Gandhi (43 per cent), have felt the urgency to improve their attendance. In contrast, 85-year-old BJP leader L K Advani and party president Rajnath Singh have much better attendance records (82 per cent and 80 per cent, respectively).
Mps from other parties also fare better than the top two of the Congress. While Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav has 86 per cent attendance, JD(U) president Sharad Yadav has 83 per cent attendance. RJD Lalu Pradad has 79 per cent attendance while JD(S) chief H D Deve Gowda has 66 per cent attendance. BSP MP Dara Singh Chauhan has 93 per cent while CPI(M)'s Basudeb Acharya has 90 per cent attendance. DMK's T R Baalu has 84 per cent attendance.
Twenty-nine Lok Sabha members have attended less than 50 per cent of the 314 sittings in the House since 2009. Commonwealth Games scam-accused Suresh Kalmadi, jailed YSR Congress chief Jagan Mohan Reddy, former Jharkhand chief ministers Madhu Koda, Shibu Soren and Babulal Marandi, cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu, actor-turned-politician Jaya Prada and former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh were among the 'low attendance' club members.
One and hundred and twenty Lok Sabha MPs attended 90 per cent or more of the meetings.