No business in Parliament for 4th day; Chairs express displeasure (Roundup)

New Delhi, Nov 22 (IANS) Frequent adjournments over the demonetisation issue with the opposition adamant on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s presence stalled business in both house of parliament for the fourth successive day on Tuesday.

The opposition, including the Congress, Trinamool Congress, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Samajwadi Party, Nationalist Congress Party and the Left, continued to create ruckus in both Houses, which riled Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairmain P.J. Kurien, who expressed their annoyance quite explicitly.

While, in the Lok Sabha, Mahajan said that “it pains when elected representatives behave like this”, in the Rajya Sabha, Kurien was annoyed enough to say that “this kind of behaviour (by members) is to be condemned”.

“I am sorry, I am not able to run the House in order… I am helpless,” said Kurien.

The Lok Sabha witnessed uproarious scene as a united opposition reiterated its demand to discuss the demonetisation issue under a rule which entails voting.

Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge reiterated the demand to suspend Question Hour and start the discussion but Mahajan did not permit it.

When the House met at noon after an adjourment, opposition members, including from the Congress, Trinamool, and the Samajwadi Party, trooped towards the Speaker’s podium shouting slogans.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister H.N. Ananth Kumar said the people of the country favoured the November 8 demonetisation decision.

“We have won the Shahdol and Lakhimpur Lok Sabha constituency seats. What is the signal? People’s voice is clear. They are against black money and corruption,” he said.

As the opposition parties didn’t relent and continued their protests demanding Modi’s presence, the Speaker adjourned the House for the day.

In the Rajya Sabha, as soon as the House met for the day, Janata Dal-United (JD-U) leader Sharad Yadav demanded compensation for the families of those who have died post-demonetisation as a result of shock or exhaustion while standing in long queues in front of banks or ATMs.

“The government should give Rs 10 lakh compensation to the kin of the people who have died since demonetisation,” he said.

Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati supported his stand and also demanded Modi’s presence in the House.

Minister of State (MoS) for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi urged the chair to start a discussion on the demonetisation issue and accused the opposition of avoiding a discussion.

At this, Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad retorted: “We are ready for discussion, but the Prime Minister should come to the House.”

Meanwhile, the opposition members streamed towards the Chairman’s podium and started shouting slogans. The Chair adjourned the House for half an hour.

As soon as the House met again at 11.30 a.m., the opposition members again started loudly demanding Modi’s presence.

“Pradhan Mantri sadan me aao (Prime Minister come to the House),” they shouted.

Naqvi again asked the Chair to initiate discussion on demonetisation.

“When the discussion (on demonetisation) started, there was no logic or facts in their (opposition’s) arguments. They struggled for arguments all through. The discussion should not be in bits and pieces. Please allow a discussion,” he said.

But Azad said: “If he (Modi) can give speeches all across the country, what stops him from coming to this House.”

The House was then adjourned amidst pandemonium till noon, then till 12.30 p.m., again till 2 p.m. and finally for the day.