Sharad Pawar asks Jagdeep Dhankhar for probe into security lapse in Parliament and suspension of MPs

The decision to suspend MPs seeking an explanation for this incident seems counterintuitive to the principles of accountability and transparency, Mr. Pawar said.

December 19, 2023 01:34 pm | Updated 07:00 pm IST - Mumbai

NCP chief Sharad Pawar. File

NCP chief Sharad Pawar. File | Photo Credit: PTI

NCP chief Sharad Pawar on December 19 asked Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar to probe the recent security lapse in Parliament and also sought his intervention into the suspension of MPs.

“I would request you to kindly address this matter in the interest of upholding the integrity of the parliamentary processes and precedents and the democratic values,” said Mr. Pawar in a letter to Dhankhar.

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Referring to the smoke canister attack” in Lok Sabha on December 13, where two men jumped from the public gallery into the House, releasing yellow smoke from the canisters before being overpowered by those present, Mr. Pawar described the incident as deeply troubling, “especially in the light of the terrorist attack that happened on that very day in 2001”.

“Given the severity of the incident, it is but natural that the Members of Parliament would seek a clarification regarding the same and the government should have been forthcoming with a statement as to how it intended to address the issue.

“It is, however, disheartening that not only has the government distanced itself from such a statement but has taken the action of suspension of Members of Parliament seeking explanation/statement regarding the same,” Mr. Pawar said.

The decision to suspend MPs seeking an explanation for this incident seems counterintuitive to the principles of accountability and transparency, Mr. Pawar said.

The senior Rajya Sabha member said MPs have a legitimate right to seek clarification and ensure the safety of the parliamentary environment, “which is our country's icon of democracy”.

“It is an irony that more than 90 members of Parliament seeking statement from the Government have got suspended, around 45 being from the Rajya Sabha.

“I am also given to understand that some members who did not enter the well and give slogans and were not involved in the 'continuous' disruption too have been named in the list of those suspended,” Mr. Pawar said.

“Realising the seriousness and gravity of the issue of attack and then the suspension that followed, I would request you to kindly address this matter in the interest of upholding the integrity of the parliamentary processes and precedents and the democratic values,” said Mr. Pawar in the letter to Mr. Dhankhar.

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