Congress alleges manhandling of its two women MPs in Lok Sabha

Congress MPs Remya Haridas (right) and S. Jothimani at Parliament House on Monday, November 25, 2019.

Congress MPs Remya Haridas (right) and S. Jothimani at Parliament House on Monday, November 25, 2019.   | Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

Congress Members jostled with the marshals in the Lok Sabha when they stormed the Well of the House carrying placards.

Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Monday alleged that two women parliamentarians of the party were manhandled when they were protesting in the well of the House over the Maharashtra government formation.

Mr. Chowdhury said S. Jothimani from Tamil Nadu and Ramya Haridass from Kerala had filed a written complaint with the Speaker’s office. “The two got manhandled. We will be waiting to see what action is being taken against the security personnel,” he told mediapersons.

The Congress leader said that what he saw in the House was “unprecedented and Congress MPs were pushed around”. “It is a testing time for us. We have to decide whether we let democracy or authoritarianism prevail in this country.”

The alleged episode happened when Speaker Om Birla asked for the eviction of two MPs from Kerala – Hibi Eden and T.N. Prathapan – by marshals As Congress members jostled with the marshals, the women MPs were allegedly manhandled.

‘Very upset’

“We were very upset, sad and even angry that actually our dignity and our right to protest and our safety, I am afraid, is all compromised within the august institution of Parliament,” said Ms. Jothimani, Lok Sabha member from Karur in Tamil Nadu.

“As Members of Parliament, we are here to represent our people, and whenever it is necessary, to protest... We should be allowed to do so but what we have seen has upset us. We never expected this kind of things happening in Parliament,” she added.

‘Oppn. space shrinking’

Meanwhile, Mr. Eden told The Hindu that both he and Mr. Prathapan were only fulfilling their duty as Opposition members.

“There are some conventions, procedures and rules in Parliament which are not being followed under the Narendra Modi government’s second term. Opposition is not given any space. Our voices are not heard,” he said.

Mr. Prathapan said the Congress will continue to protest on the issue. “It’s our right as people’s representatives to protest such a brazen attempt at dismantling the established democratic principles and the Constitution.”

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Printable version | Feb 19, 2020 6:26:22 PM |

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