On February 9, the last session of the 17th Lok Sabha ended. A closer look at the attendance of all the Lok Sabha MPs of this term shows that the house had a pretty decent attendance, with an average of 79 per cent. The data from PRS Legislative Research does not record the attendance of MPs who were ministers for the entire term, and the Speaker.
However, this number alone doesn’t say much. On the one hand, there are BJP MPs like Bhagirath Choudhary and Mohan Mandvi with a centum on attendance, ensuring they did not miss any day in the Parliament. They are followed by another 141 MPs with more than 90 per cent attendance.
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While this looks great, a bunch of MPs also missed out on a majority of Parliament sessions. This list of 29 MPs also includes prominent names like former leader of the opposition Sonia Gandhi, who represents Raebareli. Gandhi has an attendance of 49 per cent. The other big names on the list are — actor-turned-politicians Hema Malini, Kirron Kher and Sunny Deol (Aka Singh Dharmendra Deol). Malini and Kher have attendance of 49 per cent and 47 per cent, respectively. But numbers suggest that Deol is a rare visitor at the Parliament, with an attendance of 17 per cent. He is a BJP MP from Punjab’s Gurdaspur. Singer-turned-politician Hans Raj Hans, a BJP MP from North-West Delhi has an attendance of 39 per cent.
The list of MPs with low attendance also features eight BJP and eight All-India Trinamool Congress (AITC) MPs. This means that more than a third of AITC MPs have missed more than 50 per cent of Parliament sessions. The list of slackers among AITC MPs also includes a few actor-turned-politicians — Mimi Chakraborty, Nusrat Jahan Ruhi and Deepak Adhikari. Adhikari has a mere 12 per cent attendance, Chakraborty has 21 per cent, and Jahan has 23 per cent attendance. Abhishek Banerjee, the AITC General Secretary, also has missed 85 per cent of Parliament sessions.
“Attendance of MPs has ranged between 75 per cent and 80 per cent since the 15th LS. In this Lok Sabha, almost 60 per cent of MPs have attendance above 80 per cent. About 10 per cent of members have less than 60 per cent attendance,” notes PRS in its report, adding, “In the 17th LS, highest attendance was seen during the Special Session 2023 (92 per cent), followed by the Budget Session 2019 (88 per cent).”