Although four of the seven suspended Rajya Sabha members have met Chairman Hamid Ansari, the issue of revoking the action against them remains unresolved. For, the government will be willing to move a motion to this effect only after all the seven members meet him.

According to one of the suspended MPs, Nand Kishore Yadav, all the seven — four from the Samajwadi Party and one each from the Rashtriya Janata Dal, the Lok Jan Shakti Party and formerly Janata Dal (United) — will meet Mr. Ansari on Monday. They were suspended on March 9 on a motion moved by the government for their behaviour protesting against the tabling of the Women's Reservation Bill the previous day.

Sources said Veerpal Yadav, Nand Kishore Yadav, Kamal Akhtar and Amir Alam Khan (all SP) met the Chairman on different days. The members, while not expressing regret in so many words, reportedly conveyed to Mr. Ansari that they meant no disrespect to the Chair and that their protest was against the manner in which the government tabled the 108{+t}{+h} Constitution Amendment Bill.

In a turnaround, however, Mr. Kamal Akhtar and Mr. Nand Kishore Yadav denied on Friday evening that they had met the Chairman. “The Chairman has not sought any apology. It is the government that is using the Chairman as a shield. If the Chairman wants us to express regret, we will do it because he is “our Chairman,” they told journalists.

The two MPs said it was the government which should apologise to Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe and Muslim women for the manner it tabled the Bill and had them bundled out of the House by marshals. They said the government was spreading a rumour that they had expressed regret. However, the sources said the SP members, who had met Mr. Ansari, did not want to be seen as breaking the RJD-SP-JD(U) unity on the issue.

Several leaders including Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M) and S.S. Ahluwalia (BJP) are trying to work out a solution.

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