Union Minister and senior BJP leader Piyush Goyal on Tuesday was appointed as the Leader of the House in the Rajya Sabha, filling the vacancy left by Thaawarchand Gehlot who is now the Governor of Karnataka.
The appointment also takes significance as the monsoon session of Parliament is set to commence on July 19. It will conclude on August 13. Goyal has been a member of the upper house of the parliament since 2010. Until now, he was the deputy leader of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in the Rajya Sabha. He holds key portfolios in the cabinet including commerce and industry, food and consumer affairs. After the recent rejig in the Union cabinet, Goyal was given additional charge of textiles. Prior to becoming a minister in 2014, Goyal was the treasurer of the party. He was also engaged by the BJP in poll management activities and logistics during the election.
According to the Rajya Sabha Practice and Procedure, “the Leader of the House is an important parliamentary functionary who exercises direct influence on the course of parliamentary business”. The post assumes significance as the BJP does not enjoy a clear majority in the Rajya Sabha and the Leader of the House would have to bring about an effective coordination among the floor leaders during the discussions and passage of crucial bills.