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Parliament Highlights: Oppn Writes to President Asking Him to Hold Assent to Farm Bills

News18.com | September 21, 2020, 23:50 IST
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Parliament Highlights: A day after the Rajya Sabha saw unprecedented ruckus over agriculture bills, Chairman of the Upper House M Venkaiah Naidu suspended 8 MPs, including TMC's Derek O'Brien and AAP's Sanjay Singh, for unruly behaviour in the House. Expressing his disappointment over a "bad day for Rajya Sabha", Naidu said some members snatched mics and abused the deputy chairman. "Rule book was also thrown at him. This is unfortunate, unacceptable and tarnishes the image of Parliament. If marshals were not called, I wonder what would have happened." Naidu also rejected the motion of no-confidence received against Deputy Chairman Harivansh, saying it was not in proper format and required notice of 14 days. The list of suspended MPs is as follows: Derek O'Brien, Sanjay Singh, Dola Sen, Rajeev Satav, KK Ragesh, Syed Nassir Hussain, Ripun Bora and Elamaram Kareem.

The war of words between the BJP and the opposition MPs on the ruckus in Rajya Sabha yesterday over the farm bills is likely to escalate today as the party may move privilege motion against several opposition MPs accused of unruly behaviour in the House. The development comes hours after 12 opposition parties gave a notice for a no-confidence motion against Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh over the manner in which the bills were passed in the House after he overruled their pleas for an adjournment of the proceedings. The ruckus started yesterday when the government was keen to put the farm bill to vote immediately after Agriculture Minister Narendra Tomar’s reply, but the opposition, led by Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, wanted the Rajya Sabha to take up the minister’s reply and the vote on Monday. When the government refused, all hell broke loose.
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READ | Mamata Lauds Suspended Oppn MPs for Fight against Farm Bills, Seeks 'Greater Alliance' for Farmers' Sake

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Sep 21, 2020 20:02 (IST)

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Sep 21, 2020 19:28 (IST)

READ | Calculated Move? Naveen Patnaik Stuns Modi-led NDA with BJD's Stand on Farm Bills in Rajya Sabha

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READ | 'Anti-farmer' Bills Will Lead to Famine amid Covid-19 Crisis, Says Mamata Banerjee

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There are a lot of organisations that are doing wonderful philanthropic activities, Don't undermine their goodness and spoil their morale. This Bill will allow organisations of your choice to exist and others to face a natural death: IUML MP, ET Mohammed Basheer 

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If the Director or Manager of an organistaion wants to hide their identity and can't disclose their address, what work will they do? It casts suspicion on their intention. Why is Aadhaar Card being opposed?: MoS MHA Nityanand Rai

Parliament Highlights: Oppn Writes to President Asking Him to Hold Assent to Farm Bills
Opposition MPs protest outside Parliament.

First to come up to the well of the House were Trinamool Congress MPs Arpita Ghosh and Dola Sen, Congress MPs Kumari Shelja and Jairam Ramesh, and AAP lawmaker Sanjay Singh. Then TMC leader Derek O’Brien too came up to the well with the rule book to show that it was a violation of the House rules not to allow division of votes or voting by pressing the button. O’Brien’s actions are now mired in controversy, with some insisting that he tore the pages of the rule book. A close viewing of the Rajya Sabha footage adds to the confusion. It shows DMK MP Tiruchi Siva throwing a book even as O’brien was close to the chair, showing the deputy chairman the particular rule on button voting.

Later, in back-to-back high-profile press conferences, both the BJP and Congress blamed each other for tarnishing Parliament’s image because of what transpired in the Rajya Sabha on Sunday as the two contentious farm bills -- Farmer's Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020 -- were passed amid massive ruckus through voice vote. A number of protests were also staged during the day by farmers in several places, especially Punjab and Haryana, against the bills.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh flanked by five other Union Cabinet ministers addressed a press conference on Sunday evening and condemned the alleged misbehaviour with Deputy Chairperson Harivansh Narayan Singh by opposition members. He said “democracy was shamed” by the conduct of Opposition MPs in the Upper House of Parliament, while adding that he too is a farmer and nobody should believe the government would do anything to hurt the farmers.

Minutes later, the Congress said the members were upset with the way the bills were being passed, while noting that everyone went in the well of the House, including BJP leaders, and called it a conspiracy by the ruling party.

Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said the same Parliament to which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had bowed his head after coming to power had been shamed by the conduct of his ministers.

A video footage shows some torn pages being thrown at the same time. O’brien, however, denies tearing up the rule book. “If even one proof is given of me having torn the rule book, I shall resign as MP tomorrow,” he told News18.