NEW DELHI: The BJP Margdarshak Mandal has not been heard in the Parliament ever since Prime Minister Narendra Modi assumed charge of the government. One of the members of the “elders” club, Murali Manohar Joshi, finally spoke, but only to raise a “point of order”, on Monday in the Lok Sabha.
The BJP chief Amit Shah had constituted the Margdarshak Mandal consisting of party veterans Atal Bihari Vajpayee, L K Advani, M M Joshi, and Yashwant Sinha. While the official papers were laid in the Lok Sabha amid ruckus on the issue of the government not agreeing to debate on demonetization with voting, Joshi suddenly sprung to his feet, which apparently caught the treasury benches with surprise. The Opposition also dropped the slogan shouting to listen to the BJP veteran.
“Madam, I’ve a point of order,” Joshi told the Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan. After getting the attention of the Chair, Joshi said: “In the Hindi version of the official business agenda of the House, the name of the Union Minister for Tourism and Culture Mahesh Sharma is written. But in the English version, the name of Union Minister for Human Resources Development Prakash Javdekar is written against the same item number. Has it now become the norms to allow such inconsistencies?”
Javdekar, who was on his feet to lay the paper listen against his name, too was apparently taken in by surprise. The Opposition instantly lent support to Joshi. Initially, the Speaker sought to ignore Joshi’s agitation, but she found that the BJP veteran was unrelenting in raising the issue. With the Opposition egging on Joshi, former Union Minister reiterated the anomaly in the agenda paper in two languages.
At last, Mahajan assured Joshi that she would look into the issue after which the former BJP president took his seat. However, the Opposition sought to go after Javdekar, as he presented the paper while speaking in English. Since his name was not listed at the serial number in Hindi, the entire Trinamool Congress block was on feet, asking the Union Minister for HRD to speak in Hindi.
“I can speak even in Bengali, which you may not understand,” Javdekar retorted to the TMC MPs to bring an end to the issue triggered by Joshi.
Incidentally, none of the Margdarshak Mandal members speak in the House even though they regularly attend the parliament session. The Magdarshak Mandal has also not called any meeting officially so far.