J. Balaji & Aarti Dhar

Ananth Kumar and Lalu Prasad clash over remarks

NEW DELHI: Opposition parties frequently disrupted both Houses of Parliament on Wednesday, forcing repeated adjournments the 2G spectrum issue and use of unparliamentary words against other members.

While the Lok Sabha had to be finally adjourned for the day at 4.46 p.m. after five adjournments from the morning, the Rajya Sabha went on with its business in the evening after witnessing disturbances in the morning and post lunch.

In the Lok Sabha, timely intervention of some Opposition members prevented ugly scenes as they stopped Lalu Prasad (RJD) when he moved towards Ananth Kumar (BJP). Mr. Prasad charged that Mr. Kumar made some objectionable remarks against him while speaking on the discussion on Census 2011.

During question hour, AIADMK members raised the 2G spectrum issue and sought the removal of Communications and Information Technology Minister A. Raja from the Cabinet. CPI(M) members protested against the remarks of Trinamool Congress MP Sudip Bandopadhyay made on Tuesday against their leader Basudeb Acharia and sought his apology. Mr. Bandopadhyay, while speaking on the railway motormen strike, had used some words which the CPI(M) described as unparliamentary.

Speaker reprimands Trinamool MP

Speaker Meira Kumar, referring to Mr. Bandopadhyay's behaviour, said it was “unbecoming of a member of the House.” She hoped that no member would give an opportunity to the Chair to make such an observation in the future. “Those words and the manner in which they were said were quite unbecoming of a member,” she said.

While Mr. Acharia insisted on an apology, an unrelenting Mr. Bandopadhyay responded by saying that “he need not be taught how to behave in Parliament.” He said he had not spoken anything unparliamentary. “If anyone proves that, I am willing to apologise,'' he said.

Post-lunch, the House took up regular business after Mr. Acharia decided to end the deadlock following an appeal from other Opposition leaders. But that was shortlived as Mr. Ananth Kumar's comment against Mr. Lalu drew protests from the RJD, SP and Congress members, who demanded an apology. Mr. Kumar remained firm and said Bangladeshis registering as Indian citizens related to “internal disturbance and external aggression.”

“Are you with India or with Pakistan and Bangladesh,” he asked Mr. Lalu who interrupted him, charging that he was indulging in BJP propaganda by “repeatedly talking of Pakistan and Bangladesh and ignoring the issue of backwards in the census exercise.”

In the Rajya Sabha, the BJP demanded an apology from Mani Shankar Aiyar (Congress) for his remarks against Leader of the BJP Arun Jaitely made two days ago. Deputy Chairman K. Rahman Khan told Mr. Aiyar: “If a member is hurt by anybody there is nothing wrong in saying sorry.” The matter came to an end with Mr. Aiyar expressing regret.