Prime minister seeks productive, constructive budget session

New Delhi, Feb 21 (IANS) Minutes before the budget session of parliament commenced, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Thursday sought productive and constructive sittings of the two houses.

"We're looking forward to a productive, constructive session of parliament. That's what our country's people expect," the prime minister told reporters outside parliament.

He also urged the opposition to participate in "responsible dialogue and debate".

"We are looking forward to the cooperation of all sections of the house. On our part, we wish to engage constructively and productively with all sections of the house, and expect there would be responsible dialogue and debate among members of parliament," Manmohan Singh said.

President Pranab Mukherjee would address a joint session of both the houses of parliament on the first day of the budget session.

"We are meeting against the backdrop of global slowdown of economic activity which has also affected us. It is now a challenge for all of us to take a credible action that we are least affected by this global slowdown," the prime minister said.

"In this context, the way we conduct the financial business now before parliament will be a crucial determinant to cope with the formidable challenges the country faces," Manmohan Singh added.

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