Govt-Oppn standoff: 49 more Lok Sabha MPs suspended, total 141 now in Parliament

As many as 49 more opposition lawmakers were suspended from Lok Sabha on Tuesday for unruly behaviour, taking the total number of MPs facing action in both Houses of Parliament to 141 and prompting the INDIA coalition to announce nationwide anti-government protests on Friday.
Oppositions MPs of Lok Sabha
Oppositions MPs of Lok Sabha

New Delhi | As many as 49 more opposition lawmakers were suspended from Lok Sabha on Tuesday for unruly behaviour, taking the total number of MPs facing action in both Houses of Parliament to 141 and prompting the INDIA coalition to announce nationwide anti-government protests on Friday.

While the opposition bloc slammed as "undemocratic" the suspension of MPs for display of placards demanding a statement from Home Minister Amit Shah on the December 13 security breach in Parliament, the government justified the action as it accused the suspended MPs of insulting Lok Sabha Speaker, Rajya Sabha Chairman and the institution of Parliament.

A political row broke out as Trinamool Congress leader Kalyan Banerjee derisively mimicked Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar during the opposition's protest on the stairs of Parliament against the MPs' suspension, drawing strong condemnation from the ruling BJP.

Rahul Gandhi was seen making a video of the performance by Banerjee who appeared to mimic the way Dhankhar walked by leaning forward and made reference to having a spine.

Dhankhar gave vent to his anguish in Rajya Sabha, saying he was personally hurt as his farmer and Jat backgrounds were targeted.

"Imagine what must be going through my heart when your senior leader videographs a Member of Parliament mocking the institution of the chairman," he said in Rajya Sabha.

"...You used Twitter, the official handle of the spokesperson, to demean me, insult me, insult my background as a farmer, insult my position as a Jat, insult my position as chairman," Dhankhar said addressing Congress

member P Chidambaram in Rajya Sabha.

As Lok Sabha met on Tuesday, opposition members trooped into the Well of the House raising slogans and waving placards, prompting Speaker Om Birla to warn them of action citing rules of procedure. However, as the protest continued, he adjourned the proceedings till noon.

The unruly scenes were repeated when the House reassembled, prompting the government to draw up a list of 25 opposition members for suspension from Lok Sabha.

The opposition benches then offered additional names from their ranks to the government in three tranches, taking the total number of members to be suspended from the Lok Sabha to 49, a parliamentary source said.

"Many opposition leaders were uncomfortable being present in the House when a large number from their ranks were suspended from the House," the source said.

Among the 49 members suspended on Tuesday were National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, Congress members Shashi Tharoor and Manish Tewari, NCP leader Supriya Sule and SP member Dimple Yadav.

Lok Sabha took up legislative business when it re-convened at 2:00 pm and passed the National Capital Territory of Delhi Laws (Special Provisions) Second (Amendment) Bill after a brief discussion. It was later passed by Rajya Sabha too. The House then took up discussion on the three bills to replace the colonial era criminal laws.

Parliamentary Affairs Pralhad Joshi decried the Trinamool member's actions as a mockery of democracy and constitutional institutions.

"INDIA bloc parties have been like touring talkies, holding their meetings in different cities. Now this drama company has started mimicry by making fun of a person who is from OBC (Other Backward Classes) and farming background.

"Rahul Gandhi has no sense, let alone any good sense. (Congress chief Mallikarjun) Kharge ji should apologise," Joshi told reporters.

"They are a disgrace to democracy, to the people they represent, and to the nation," Joshi said.

The opposition INDIA bloc, at its meeting here, adopted a resolution condemning the suspension of parliamentarians and announced a nationwide protest on Friday.

On Monday, 45 opposition members were suspended in Rajya Sabha and 33 in Lok Sabha. Last week, 13 opposition members were suspended from the Lok Sabha and one was suspended from the Rajya Sabha for disrupting the proceedings.

In Lok Sabha, 39 of the total 48 members of the Congress have been suspended, 16 of the 24 DMK members, 13 of the 22 Trinamool members and 11 of the 16 JD(U) members have faced action.

Among the suspended members are floor leaders of the Congress, Trinamool, DMK, JD(U), National Conference and the NCP (Sharad Pawar faction).

With Tuesday's suspension of 49 opposition MPs for the remaining part of the session for disrupting proceedings, the total tally of suspended MPs in Lok Sabha rose to 95.

The INDIA bloc parties had a strength of 138 in Lok Sabha, of which 43 MPs are now left in the House.

Nine MPs of the Congress, including former Congress presidents Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, are left in the Lower House for the duration of Winter Session.

With most of the opposition members under suspension from the Lok Sabh, two -- The Central Goods and Services Tax (Second Amendment) Bill, 2023, and the Provisional Collection of Taxes Bill, 2023, -- piloted by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman were passed by voice vote after a short debate.

Latest News

No stories found.

Related Stories

No stories found.
logo
Metrovaartha- En
english.metrovaartha.com