NEW DELHI: After nearly two-weeks of disrupted Monsoon session on demand of resignations of top BJP ministers, the Opposition on Friday escalated the situation by putting a five-point censure motion notice against External Affairs Ministers Sushma Swaraj in the Lok Sabha alleging that ‘improprieties and illegality’ were committed by her in helping former IPL chief Lalit Modi.
The Speaker’s Office confirmed receiving the censure notice. Six reasons and five previous instances when the Lower House admitted similar censure motions have been cited in the notice submitted by RSP MP N K Premachandran from Kerala.
The Lok Sabha Secretariat officials said the Speaker, “as was required”, has sent the notice to both Prime Minister Narendra Modi as well as the External Affairs Minister seeking their response.
If admitted by the Speaker, it will be discussed under Rule 184, which means debate with compulsory voting. This is a significant development in the sense that the Prime Minister is in all likelihood would have to give a reply to the Speaker as the notice concerns a Cabinet minister.
Premachandran’s notice cited six grounds, including “conflict of interest, violation of oath of office, nepotism (as she was doing an undue favour for a person having a fugitive status), thereby bringing an apparent change in the government’s stated policy, without informing the Prime Minister and the ministry officials concerned”.
This, in turn, also means that the deadlock in Parliament would be broken as the Opposition/Congress will have to allow the discussion to take place. In the unlikely event of the censure motion getting passed, it would not affect the status of the government in any way. The ruling side has a comfortable majority in the Lok Sabha.