The postponed debate on the Liberhan Commission report that is expected to see impassioned speeches, with political parties making accusations and counter-accusations, has now been fixed for December 9 and 10 in the Lok Sabha.
The Business Advisory Committee meeting here on Wednesday decided to keep two days free for the discussion on the 1000-page report dealing with the demolition of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya on December 6, 1992, as a large number of MPs expressed their wish to speak on the subject that arouses a lot of emotion even after 17 years.
Fresh dates were fixed after the government stated that it would be able to make Hindi copies of the Liberhan report available by Thursday.
Initially, the date fixed for the discussion in the Lok Sabha was December 1. But the day before the scheduled discussion, Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh met Speaker Meira Kumar to point out his party would not be able to participate as the report was not yet available in Hindi. After discussing the issue with the government and the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Speaker decided to postpone the debate.
The tentative date for discussion of the same report in the Rajya Sabha is also December 9, but this could be changed as Home Minister P. Chidambaram who will be replying to the debate can only be present in one House. However, some members of the Rajya Sabha felt that the Upper House should be allowed to get precedence and the Liberhan debate should be advanced to December 7 or 8.
The BJP has decided that its president Rajnath Singh will lead the charge with deputy leader Sushma Swaraj following in the Lok Sabha. Its speakers in the Rajya Sabha will be Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley and the former party president Venkaiah Naidu. The Congress, however, has not named its speakers. The BJP has decided that none of those indicted by the Liberhan report will speak. They should not have to defend themselves. Others will, Ms. Swaraj told reporters.