NEW DELHI: Reports of Shiv Sena MPs, apparently angry over not being served Maharashtra food, allegedly forcing a Muslim worker to eat a chapati to break his Ramzan fast today created uproar in both Houses of Parliament.
As soon as the Lok Sabha assembled for the day, several Opposition membes raised the issue and termed it as violation of religious beliefs.
Members from Congress, RJD, Trinamool Congress and AIMIM were on their feet raising the issue. PDP members too were seen waiving a paper but they could not be heard in the din.
AIADMK members were seen waiving a copy of an an English daily but Speaker Sumitra Mahajan asked them not to raise the same question every time.
The Speaker said the members should allow the Question Hour to proceed smoothly and she would allow the issue to be raised during Zero Hour.
She said Congress leader in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge and Shiv Sena's Anant Geete had met her separately.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said the issue could not be raised as "nobody knows the facts" and before raking up the issue the facts should be ascertained.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi was present in the House when the issue was raised.
After the Speaker's assurance, the House proceeded with the Question Hour.
It was reported that a group of around 11 Shiv Sena MPs, apparently angry over not being served Maharashtrian food, allegedly forced a Muslim catering superviser who was fasting for Ramzan to eat a chapati at the new Maharashtra Sadan in the national capital last week.
In the Rajya Sabha, Ali Anwar Ansari (JD-U) raised the issue when the House met for the day but Chairman Hamid Ansari said the issue can be raised during Zero Hour.
Rajeev Shukla (Cong) said all religions should be treated with respect as members from his party as well as Samajwadi Party rose on their feet protesting the alleged incident.
Sitaram Yechuri (CPM) said members be allowed to raise the issue during Zero Hour.
"He has raised it, we will allow it in Zero Hour," Ansari said asking members to resume their places so that the Question Hour can be taken up.
"Take it up in Zero Hour," he said following which members resumed their places and listed business was taken up.
V Maitreyan (AIADMK) sought to raise reports of Prime Minister's Office (PMO) allegedly exerting pressure on the collegium headed by then Chief Justice of India R C Lahoti in June 2005 to confer permanent status to a Madras High Court Additional Judge who was under corruption cloud.
"I have given a notice for suspension of Question Hour," Maitreyan, showing a copy of the newspaper which carried the report, said.
Ansari asked him to take it up in Zero Hour. "Don't show any newspaper... we all read newspapers. You don't have to educate us," he said.