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Parliament disrupted again, Speaker warns unruly MPs of stern action

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  9 Dec 2016 12:00 AM GMT

New Delhi, Dec 8: Parliament failed to function and transact any meaningful business yet again on Thursday as the government failed to find a common ground with the opposition protesting in both the houses. Both opposition and the government continued to blame each other for the parliamentary stalemate even as an anguished President Prab Mukherjee on Thursday advised the MPs to “do their job” instead of indulging in sloganeering and protests.

In the Lok Sabha, miffed at unrelenting sloganeering by some members, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan warned of “harsh steps”. The opposition members were on their feet as soon as the house met at 11 a.m. and gathered near the Speaker’s chair while shouting slogans. In the din, Mahajan carried out the Question Hour for about half an hour, repeatedly warning the protesting members.

But the ruckus only got acute and the house was adjourned until noon. When the house met at noon, the Speaker warned of action if the opposition members did not stop protesting and disrupting those speaking.

“It is not proper to come in front of a member and disturb them but it is happening here,” Mahajan said as opposition members raised slogans near her podium.

“I would like members to keep this in mind, so that we do not have to take any harsh steps. Any member speaking is an elected member and has the right to speak,” she said.

Mahajan then continued with the Zero Hour amid sloganeering before adjourning the house till 2 p.m. When the house re-assembled, the Speaker took up the Supplementary Demands for Grants, but Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge was stood up to ask for permission to speak.

Mahajan, however, sought an assurance that the opposition would let the house function if she allowed him.

With the opposition not giving any assurance, the Supplementary Demands for Grants were passed by voice vote amid the din.

The house was then adjourned for the day. In the Rajya Sabha, Chairman Hamid Ansari adjourned the house for the day amid ruckus by the opposition and treasury benches soon after it was reconvened post-lunch at 2 p.m.

Earlier, when the house met at 11 a.m., Ansari asked members to resume the debate on demonetisation but opposition members raised slogans, which were countered by some members from the treasury benches who also trooped into the aisle.

Ansari then adjourned the house for the day. Earlier, when the upper house met for the day, opposition members alleged that more than 100 people have died since demonetisationwas announced on November 8.

Union Minister M. Venkaiah idu said the opposition was making it a usual practice to raise the issue, even as a structured debate has already been initiated. He said: “November 8 will remain a historic day in India.”

Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam bi Azad called those who died after the November 8 demonetisation as “martyrs” and said the government was not ready to offer condolences over these deaths was a “height of shamelessness”. (IANS)

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