This book is a collection of essays on various themes that have engaged Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’Brien in his political career and in his attempts to contribute to the shaping of public debate and policy making. Derek tells readers why Parliament is not just a new building; it is an establishment with old traditions, values, precedents and rules that the Modi-led government has failed to comprehend. All the themes of the essays have, in some form or another, been the focus of hectic contestation and argument in recent times. This includes the decision of 19 opposition parties to boycott the inauguration of the new Parliament building, as a response to the ‘boycott of parliamentary traditions by an authoritarian government’. Who Cares About Parliament reflects on the significance the Parliament holds in a young citizen’s life, specifically because the actions of Parliament will affect us for the longest time.
ABOUT THE BOOK (INR-395, PP-224)
Derek O’Brien, India’s favourite quizmaster and now an award-winning parliamentarian, has observed parliamentary proceedings from the first row of the Rajya Sabha while playing a key role for the Opposition and raising difficult questions. In Who Cares about Parliament: Speaking Up to Protect India’s Great Institution, he explains how Parliament has been undermined in the last decade. The book narrates how rules, precedents and conventions established over the years have been bypassed and ignored; how this glorious institution is being mocked at and destroyed. With an in-depth insight into legislative procedures, O’Brien reminds us that Parliament is not just a new building; it is an establishment with old traditions and values—it is the foundation of Indian democracy. Who Cares about Parliament is a must-read for those who want a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by our nation today.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Derek O’Brien is a politician, author, columnist, television personality, public speaker and quiz show host. The multiple award-winning quizmaster of 30 years is now one of Indian Parliament’s most recognizable faces and a leading and articulate voice of the Opposition. He is a two-time member parliamentarian from West Bengal and leads the TMC in Rajya Sabha.
O’Brien has addressed students at educational institutions like Harvard, Yale, Columbia, IIMs, IITs and more. In 2012, he was invited to address the United Nations General Assembly. He was honoured with the ‘Parliamentarian of the Year’ award in 2022.
Derek O’Brien has authored over 50 reference and quiz books, including the best-selling Inside Parliament: Views from the Front Row. His speeches and writings on issues of national importance are discussed widely in the national and international media.