Opposition stalls Rajya Sabha again

Chairman Hamid Ansari’s pleas to allow the Question Hour to proceed went unheeded as Opposition members continued to demand action from the government.

Updated - November 16, 2021 05:22 pm IST

Published - July 25, 2015 02:36 am IST

here was no let-up in the Opposition’s attack on the government on Friday as heated exchanges between members in the Rajya Sabha forced an adjournment during the first half.

Amid din in the second half of the day, the government moved a motion to withdraw the Negotiable Instruments (Amendment) Bill, 2015.

The Bill was tabled in the Rajya Sabha on July 21 and after the concurrence from the Lok Sabha, it was finally withdrawn on Friday to amend it further. An ordinance had been issued last month to enable the people file cheque bounce cases in the place where it is presented for payment and not the place of issue.

Chairman Hamid Ansari’s pleas to allow the Question Hour to proceed went unheeded as Opposition members continued to demand action from the government against External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje for helping former IPL Chairman Lalit Modi and against the Shivraj Singh Chauhan government in Madhya Pradesh for the Vyapam scam.

BJP MP and Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad tried to defuse the situation in the Upper House by requesting the Opposition members to allow business. Pointing to Congress’s Ashwani Kumar, he said it had been a while since the House heard his couplets in Urdu. But this failed to cut any ice with the Opposition and protests continued.

Unable to get his point across in the din, Leader of the Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad blamed the BJP for failing to allow the House to function.

The ruling party has become a “stumbling block” in the functioning of Parliament, he said.

Earlier, soon after papers were laid on the table, Pramod Tiwari of the Congress said he had given notice under Rule 267 seeking suspension of business to discuss alleged corruption in Rajasthan and Ms. Swaraj for allegedly trying to help “absconder” Modi [Lalit].

Janata Dal(United)’s Sharad Yadav took pot shots at the government for sitting on a dharna and said it was “unprecedented” that the ruling party, which has a majority, is protesting.

“It has never happened before, that a ruling party is sitting on dharna ... Who are they asking for help? Is it the Almighty,” Mr. Yadav mocked.

Congress MPs trooped into the Well demanding the resignation of Ms. Swaraj. The House was adjourned till Monday amid the commotion.

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