House passes a dozen Bills post-haste

Important Bills including the Karnataka Groundwater (Regulation and control of development and management) Bill, 2011 which seeks to control indiscriminate exploitation of groundwater, were passed without any discussion. It took less than 25 minutes for the House to pass 12 bills.

Speaker K G Bopaiah took up the day’s agenda in the afternoon ignoring the protests by the Opposition. No Opposition member asked questions. Next the bills were passed by voice vote in random succession even as the Opposition members shouted slogans.

Three bills including the Karnataka State Innovation Bill, 2011 to establish Karnataka University, Dharwad and University of Mysore as innovative universities; the Karnataka Panchayat Raj (Amendment) Bill, 2011, to cap reservation in rural local bodies at 50 per cent, though listed in the agenda were held back on the insistence of the Opposition parties, sources said.

‘Murder of democracy’

Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah termed the government’s move to conduct proceedings despite the House being not in order as “a murder of democracy”.
He said the Congress would take up the issue with Governor H R Bhardwaj soon.

Bills that got the nod

The Bills passed by the Assembly on Wednesday.

n The Karnataka Groundwater (Regulation and Control of Development and Management) Bill, 2011

If the Bill is passed in the Council, all those planning to sink borewells or wells in notified areas need to obtain permission. Besides, owners of existing borewells and wells falling in notified areas should register themselves and obtain a certificate to continue using groundwater.

* The Karnataka Hindu Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments (Amendment) Bill, 2011- Proposes to bring in major changes in the way Muzrai temples are managed, including keeping temples attached to mutts, out of the purview of the Act.

* Karnataka Professional Educational institutions (Regulation of admission and fixation of fee, Special Provision) Bill, 2011- Recognises the consensual agreement between the government and the private unaided educational institutions running professional courses for 2011-12.

* Karnataka Public Trusts Bill 2011 Provides for bringing non-religious trusts like those involved in relief of poverty, education, medical relief and social welfare under its purview.  The Bill was also passed by the Legislative Council.

* National Law School of India University (amendment ) Bill-2011-Provides for Chief Justice of India or his nominee (who should be a sitting judge of the Supreme Court) to be a “visitor” of the university

* Factories (Karnataka amendment) Bill, 2011 - Makes provision for increasing the working hours in factories from 9 to 10 hours subject to a maximum of 48 hours a week; duration of OT hours increased from 12 to 22 hours and OT allowed for 120 hours spread over three months which is now restricted to 75 hours.

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