12 opposition MPs suspended for unruly acts for Rajya Sabha session

New Delhi: On Monday, the first day of the winter session of Parliament, 12 opposition MPs were suspended from the Rajya Sabha through a resolution brought by the government. The suspension will be for the remainder of the season for his misconduct and unruly behavior during the monsoon season.

Leaders of opposition parties together condemned the “unnecessary and undemocratic suspension” of the 12 members and said it was done in “violation of all rules of procedure of the Rajya Sabha”.

Suspended members allege Parliament’s rule on suspension of members that a member can be suspended for “not more than the remainder of a session”. Some members posted excerpts from Rule 256 of the Suspension Rules on social media.

Among the suspended members are six from Congress, two each from TMC and Shiv Sena and one each from CPM and CPI.

The six suspended members of Congress are Phoolo Devi Netam, Chhaya Verma, Ripun Bora, Rajamani Patel, Syed Nasir Hussain and Akhilesh Prasad Singh.

Shiv Sena’s Priyanka Chaturvedi and Anil Desai, TMC’s Dola Sen and Shanta Chhetri, CPM’s Elaram Karim and CPI’s Binoy Viswam are the other members suspended for the rest of the session.

An ugly scene was witnessed in the Upper House when opposition members were opposing three agriculture bills during the monsoon session.

Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh Narayan Singh announced the suspension of the members and adjourned the House till Tuesday.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi introduced the motion and was passed by voice vote despite opposition from the opposition. The members will remain suspended for the rest of the current session.

Reading out the motion, Joshi said, “This House takes cognizance and strongly condemns the blatant disregard of the authority of the Speaker, persistent misuse of the rules of the House, thereby deliberately obstructing the business of the House through his unprecedented misconduct.” Contempt, uncontrolled and violent behavior and willful attacks on security personnel on the last day of the 254th session – by hurting the prestige of this House.

Suspended Shiv Sena member Chaturvedi said the scared government was silencing the opposition by twisting the rule book of Parliament. He said soon after his suspension on Monday, “If speaking up for the people of this country is deemed unruly by the government, the BJP will be forced to disrupt Parliament year after year ‘under the guise of being part of the Parliament process’. As the opposition should apologise.” ,

The last day of the monsoon session witnessed chaotic scenes and marshals were called as opposition members protested on various issues. The government had not only accused the opposition of creating an unruly scene in the Well of the House, but also accused some of them of assaulting a woman marshal in the House.

The opposition had alleged that additional people were called and some leaders attacked.

Soon after the session was adjourned indefinitely on August 11, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu had considered several options against the so-called unruly leaders. A delegation of seven ministers submitted a memorandum to him demanding action against these opposition members for “unprecedented, extreme and violent acts in the House”.

These were Union Ministers Piyush Goyal, Prahlad Joshi, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Dharmendra Pradhan, Bhupendra Yadav, Arjun Ram Meghwal and V Muraleedharan. Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh was also present during the meeting.

The options considered by Naidu included setting up a special committee to probe the incident and recommend action, allowing the Committee of Privileges or the Ethics Committee of the Rajya Sabha to take up the matter.

The Vice President consulted with former and serving senior officials of the Rajya Sabha Secretariat to see what precedent allows, and what kind of committee can recommend action.

Naidu had also met BJD panel vice-president Sasmit Patra, who was the chairman at the time of the alleged incidents in the Rajya Sabha on August 11.

CPI leader Binoy Viswam had also written to the Secretary General of Rajya Sabha, saying that the government had selectively leaked CCTV footage of the Rajya Sabha, which is a privileged property of the House. He had demanded a fair probe into the issue, as he claimed that outsiders were brought into the House and thrashed.