PM says Opposition’s ‘antics’ will ensure ‘less than their current strength in the Lok Sabha in 2024’

As of Wednesday, following the suspension of another set of 49 Lok Sabha MPs, there were only 47 MPs left in the Lok Sabha representing the Opposition

Updated - December 19, 2023 05:27 pm IST

Published - December 19, 2023 04:33 pm IST - NEW DELHI

 Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives for the BJP Parliamentary Party meeting, in New Delhi, on Dec. 19, 2023.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives for the BJP Parliamentary Party meeting, in New Delhi, on Dec. 19, 2023. | Photo Credit: PTI

Amid the mass suspension of opposition MPs from both Houses of Parliament, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told BJP MPs that the behaviour of Opposition MPs had ensured that the latter may not return to the Lok Sabha “even in their current strength”.

Addressing the BJP’s parliamentary party meet on Monday, and before another set of 49 Lok Sabha MPs were suspended from the House, Mr. Modi said that some (referring to the Opposition) were “not destined to do constructive work”.

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Speaking to the media after the meeting was over, Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Pralhad Joshi said that the PM had, in the closed door meeting, also expressed concern over what he termed “attempts” to justify the security breach in Parliament on December 13. “Prime Minister Modi said that this is as worrisome as the incident itself,” Mr. Joshi said.

Wayanad MP and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had earlier said that the breach in Parliament’s security last week was due in part to Indian youth’s inability to find employment because of the current government’s policies.

According to former Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Mr. Modi also told BJP MPs that while, currently, his party was occupying 2.5 blocks of seating in the Lok Sabha chambers, the Opposition’s actions would ensure that the BJP would possibly occupy the whole.

Mr. Modi is also said to have urged BJP MPs to not get distracted by dramatic moves of the Opposition, to work according to the Constitution, and to respect the mandate of the people. “The Opposition by their actions is undermining the Constitution and also parliamentary democracy,” he is reported to have said.

The remarks attain significance in the background of repeated demands by the Opposition, reiterated on Tuesday, of a statement to be made on the floor of both Houses of Parliament by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on the security breach in Parliament. As of Wednesday, there were only 47 MPs left in the Lok Sabha representing the Opposition.

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