Bishop Cotton Girls’ School, Bangalore, held their first ever edition of Cotton Girls’ Model Parliament (CGMPAR) on 11 September and 12 September, 2020. CGMPAR was a simulation of the legislative procedures of the Indian parliament. It successfully hosted a national level event during this unprecedented pandemic. BCGS held a spectacular event which served as an incredible platform to those who wished to know more about the Indian Parliament. The event incorporated three committees, that is, Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and a Press gallery.
The event was conducted online and it hosted over fifteen schools and colleges nationwide. The event officially opened with the Principal, Dr. Mrs. Lavanya Mithran, addressing the formal gathering. It was followed by a inspiring and thought provoking address by the eminent news anchor, Mr. Rajdeep Sardesai. He stated, “Our diversity can only be protected by notions of equal citizenship.” It was followed by a passionate speech and declaration of youth power by Haniya, who was the Head of this event.
The mock Lok Sabha session which was held on 11 September, 2020 consisted of obituary references, question hour and legislative business. The Ministers of the concerned departments were then called upon by the Speaker to respond to the questions posed by the opposition party, where different topics of national importance were discussed and given attention. The Bill was then introduced by the Secretary-General, which was taken up for discussion. The Bill was “Promotion of domestic start-up” to promote domestic start-ups by providing them with government sanctioned loans. The first day of the event then concluded with the voting session; on the count being taken, the Speaker called for those not in favour and then declared the status of the Bill in the House. The Bill was passed with 33 votes, having a maximum participation of 50 delegates in the Lok Sabha.
In the mock Rajya Sabha session held on the first half of 12 September, 2020, The aforementioned Bill that was passed in the Lok Sabha was taken up for discussion. It was followed by a Crisis Session which addressed the floods in Assam and suggested necessary relief measures. The House then moved for the Voting Session, which was headed by the Chairperson. On count being taken, the Chairperson called for those not in favour and thus, the voting session was concluded.
The Joint Session was held for the second half of the day, to determine the fate of the Bill. The Press Gallery was present on both days of the event as “silent observers” during the sessions of the two Houses. They were given the opportunity to question the Ministers, during the second half of the day. (THE OUTCOME OF THE BILL).
The Cotton Girls’ Model Parliament turned out to be immensely successful, despite the challenging circumstances of the unprecedented pandemic. It gave the participants an opportunity to exercise their voices and opinions, and truly comprehend the functioning of the Indian Parliament. They discussed contemporary issues, with special reference to the global pandemic. It was a highly realistic educational experience for the students where they simulated the working of the Parliament. This gives us hope for the future generations, where the virtues of democracy will be upheld and the supremacy of the Constitution will be honoured. Mr. N.A Harris (MLA – Shantinagar Constituency) was the Chief Guest for the closing ceremony and he addressed the gathering and spoke about empowerment of girls and encouraged young parliamentarians. Mrs. Maria Victor, the brains behind the event, motivated the youngsters with her inspiring words at the closing ceremony and upheld the spirit of Cottonians –
Nec Dextrorsum, Nec Sinistrorsum.