Government forced to go cool on big-mouth MPs
By Express News Service | Published: 09th August 2013 10:06 AM |
In the wake of the repeated adjournments and the BJP-led Opposition staying away from the House, the Centre was on Thursday forced to ask the Rajya Sabha Chair to reconsider the naming of the 22 BJP and TDP members for disrupting the House.
As soon as the House assembled in the morning, the Opposition members were on their feet, expressing unhappiness that that 20 BJP and 2 TDP members were named in the Au Parliamentary bulletin for August 7 for violation of “rules and etiquette of the Rajya Sabha”.
They were accused of entering the Well of the House and “persistently and wilfully obstructing the proceedings of the House”.
The list included BJP members Maya Singh, Tarun Vijay, Parshottam Khodabhai Rupala and Smriti Irani. “I have been in the House for the last 13 years. I have seen Members entering the Well of the House, tearing away papers and snatching them away from the Minister on the Women’s Reservation Bill,” said BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu.
“No such thing was done earlier, but it has been done now because over the last two days, some Members have protested, that too, belonging to the main Opposition party, the BJP. Why do we have this discrimination?” he asked.On Wednesday, both Houses of Parliament witnessed an uproar over the deaths of five Indian soldiers near the Line of Control, with the Opposition claiming that Union Defence Minister A K Antony’s statement gave Pakistan the chance to deny its role in the incident. As RS Chairman Hamid Ansari tried to get a word in, other BJP members also spoke up against the move, asserting that it was discriminatory. Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley noted that there had been several incidents of expression of protests in the house.
“In fact, in the last three days, we have witnessed a ruling party Member menacingly marching towards another member of a supporting party…. Now the object has been that the House can function peacefully and, therefore, these incidents are played down rather than played up,” he said.
Jaitley said that the Opposition will keep off the House until the names were removed. He then led a BJP walkout from the Rajya Sabha. They were followed a few minutes later by alliance partner AIADMK.
Ansari adjourned the Question Hour, but the story was repeated during Zero Hour, which saw two more adjournments.When the House reassembled after lunch at 2pm, the BJP members still kept away. Following this, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath requested Deputy Chair P J Kurien to “consider the matter” of removing the names of the Opposition MPs.Kurien responded, “The matter will be reconsidered” and also asked the Opposition to come back to the House.”
Kurien responded, “The matter will be reconsidered” and also asked the Opposition to come back to the House. “(The)Opposition is as important as the Government in Parliamentary democracy. It is not a democratic practice to run Parliament without the Opposition,” he said.
Escorted by Minister of State for Parliamentary affairs, the BJP MPs trooped back and the House proceeded as per schedule by discussing the Companies Bill.