FILE: Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla addresses a press conference, in New Delhi. (Photo | PTI)
FILE: Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla addresses a press conference, in New Delhi. (Photo | PTI)

No presiding officer wants to suspend members but legislature's dignity can't be hurt: Om Birla

In a democracy, when members violate the dignity and decorum of legislature, it does not send out a good message, Birla said.

BHOPAL: Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Tuesday said no presiding officer likes to suspend members of a legislature but the dignity of the House cannot be compromised.

Replying to a question about the suspension of more than 140 Opposition MPs from both Houses during the recently concluded session of Parliament, he also said that a new "tradition" has emerged where someone announces in advance that the legislature will not be allowed to function today.

Birla was talking to reporters here after inaugurating the two-day `Prabodhan' programme, a training session for the newly-elected members of the Madhya Pradesh Assembly.

"No presiding officer ever wants to suspend (members) but the dignity of the legislature cannot be compromised. We try to maintain the dignity of the House," he said.

In a democracy, when members violate the dignity and decorum of legislature, it does not send out a good message, Birla added.

Every member gets a chance to discuss every issue as per the rules and procedure, which also yields a better outcome, he said.

To another question, Birla said in 2001 there was a very serious discussion on the issue of disruptions among assembly speakers of all the states and leaders of political parties, and everyone was concerned about maintaining the dignity and prestige of legislatures in the country.

"Everyone believes that the conduct of members in a legislature should be dignified. There should be a decorum. A legislature is for discussion and dialogue. There can be consent and disagreement, but the dignity of the House should not be diminished," he said.

"A new tradition has started (where it is announced in advance) that the assembly or Lok Sabha will not be allowed to function today. The Lok Sabha or assemblies not running in a planned manner is not a good tradition for a democracy," Birla added.

First-time MLAs too can perform well, he said, adding that Narendra Modi became the chief minister of a state for the first time, an MP for the first time and became the country's prime minister, and he was successful all through.

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