Parliament proceedings | Rajya Sabha suspends 19 Opposition members for ‘willfully obstructing the House’

The suspended members belong to Trinamool Congress, DMK, TRS, CPI and CPI(M)

Updated - July 26, 2022 10:49 pm IST

Published - July 26, 2022 03:20 pm IST

Opposition members protest in the Rajya Sabha during ongoing Monsoon Session of Parliament, in New Delhi,  on July 25, 2022.

Opposition members protest in the Rajya Sabha during ongoing Monsoon Session of Parliament, in New Delhi, on July 25, 2022. | Photo Credit: PTI

Nineteen Members of Parliament (MPs) were on Tuesday suspended from attending Rajya Sabha session for the remainder of the week for disrupting the House proceedings and demanding a discussion on price rise and a rollback of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on daily essentials.

The suspended MPs are seven from Trinamool Congress (TMC), six from Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), three from Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) and two from Communist Party of India (Marxist) and one from Communist Party of India (CPI). Later, the House was adjourned for the day as the Chair appealed the suspended MPs to withdraw from the House, but they continued to remain in the well of the House.

This is the highest number of single batch suspension and follows the suspension of four Congress MPs in Lok Sabha on Monday for the rest of the monsoon session. In November last year, 12 MPs from Opposition parties were suspended for the entire winter session in Rajya Sabha.

Sushmita Dev, Mausam Noor, Shanta Chhetri, Dola Sen, Santanu Sen, Abir Ranjan Biswas and Nadiumal Haque of the TMC were suspended. DMK’s M Mohamed Abdulla, Kanimozhi NVN Somu, M Shanmugam, S Kalyanasundaram, R Girirajan and N R Elango were also suspended. B Lingaiah Yadav, Ravichandra Vaddiraju and Damodar Rao Divakonda (TRS), V Sivadasan and A A Rahim (CPI-M) and Sandosh Kumar (CPI) were the other leaders.

Minister of State (MoS) for Parliamentary Affairs V. Muraleedharan moved a motion to suspend 10 MPs in the Rajya Sabha. When it was adopted by a voice vote, Deputy Chairman Harivansh Narayan Singh read out the names of 19 members who have been suspended for the rest of the week.

In the morning, the Upper House paid tributes to the soldiers killed during the Kargil war. As soon as papers were laid on the table of the House, Opposition MPs stormed to the Well of the House demanding a rollback of the GST on certain essential goods. Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu, without even taking up the notices before him, adjourned the House till 12 p.m.

Deputy Chairman insisted that they will be allowed to ask questions only if the Opposition members go back to their seats.

When the House assembled, similar scenes of ruckus continued. Deputy Chairman Harivansh adjourned the House for 15 minutes at 12.05 p.m. But even after that, the pandemonium continued and the question hour was taken up amid ruckus. There was a question on the changes in the GST slabs.

Many Opposition members wanted to ask supplementary questions on this, but the Deputy Chairman insisted that they will be allowed to ask questions only if the Opposition members go back to their seats. Mr. Harivansh warned the protesting members against showing placards, saying he will be forced to invoke Rule 256 and name the members if the ruckus continued. The House adjourned for lunch at 1 p.m.

When the House resumed at 2 p.m., MPs continued to be in the Well of the House and Mr. Harivansh said they were disrupting the House and not letting other MPs to speak. The MPs were then suspended and the House adjourned for 15 minutes. When it resumed, the suspended MPs refused to heed to the Chair’s appeals to leave the House, leading to another adjournment for one hour. The House was finally adjourned until Wednesday.

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