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Issue of withdrawal of SPG cover for Gandhis raised in Lok Sabha

Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury along with party MPs addressing media at Parliament on the withdrawal of SPG security cover from the Gandhis.

Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury along with party MPs addressing media at Parliament on the withdrawal of SPG security cover from the Gandhis.   | Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

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Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said the family faces threat to life and the cover by the elite security organisation should not have been withdrawn.

Lok Sabha Om Birla on Tuesday warned of action against protesting members as Congress MPs trooped into the well of the House over withdrawal of Special Protection Group (SPG) cover provided to the Gandhi family and demanded a response from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah.

“Sonia Gandhi ji and Rahul Gandhi ji are not normal protectees. Vajpayee ji had allowed Special Protection Group security for the Gandhi family. From 1991-2019, NDA came to power twice but their SPG cover was never removed. I don’t know what has happened to them [Modi government],” Leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said after raising the issue during Zero Hour — when an MP can raise any issue with prior notice.

DMK leader T.R. Baalu too had supported the Congress leader and questioned inadequate security to Congress president Sonia Gandhi, who along with former party chief Rahul Gandhi and party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra are provided security by the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF).

Junior parliamentary affairs minister Arjun Meghwal, however, objected to Mr. Chowdhury raising the issue and pointed out that the Speaker had already rejected his adjournment motion on it.

“He has to raise the issue only under proper rules as you have already rejected the adjournment motion,” Mr. Meghwal told the Chair.

As soon as proceedings started at 11 a.m. and Question Hour got under way, Congress MPs walked into the well, shouting slogans like “Prime Minister give reply”, “We want justice” and “Please stop revenge politics.”

After the Speaker’s request to the members to go back to their seats failed to have any effect, Mr. Birla issued the warning.

“There might have been precedents of protesting in the well. From today onwards, no [member] will protest in the well. If not, I will be forced to take action,” he said.

“Today, there is a discussion on farmers’ issue. This is not good as you are not interested in discussion over such an important issue,” the Speaker added, when questions related to agriculture were being asked by other MPs.

Members of the Congress and DMK later walked out in protest after the Speaker didn’t allow a discussion on the SPG issue.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2019 9:01:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/issue-of-withdrawal-of-spg-cover-for-gandhis-raised-in-lok-sabha/article30015095.ece

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