Will value Opposition word: PM Narendra Modi
New Delhi: In a bid to reach out to Opposition parties, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that an “active Opposition” is important for parliamentary democracy and assured that the government values “every word” of the Opposition whose leaders need not “bother about their numbers”. Later, Mr Modi led the new MPs in taking oath amid slogans of “Jai Shri Ram” and “Bharat Mata ki Jai”.

Addressing the media outside Parliament before the start of the first session of the 17th Lok Sabha, Mr Modi said, “The role of an active Opposition is an important perquisite in a parliamentary democracy. The Opposition need not bother about their numbers. I hope they speak actively and participate in House proceedings... Their every word... Every feeling is valuable to us.”

“When we come to Parliament, we should forget paksh (treasury) and vipaksh (Opposition). We should think about issues with a nishpaksh (impartial) spirit and work in the larger interest of the nation,” he said.

As the Leader of the House, Mr Modi was the first to take oath.

In the previous Lok Sabha, several sessions were washed out as the Opposition and the treasury benches could not reach a meeting point.

Allaying fears of suppressiondue to the BJP’s brute majority in the House, Mr Modi said he hopes the Opposition “will speak actively... I am hopeful that this session will be productive."