18 Political Parties To Hit Streets Today Over MPs’ Suspension

New Delhi: More than 18 Opposition parties have planned a march from Parliament to Vijay Chowk to protest against the suspension of 12 lawmakers from the Rajya Sabha — an issue that has already triggered daily protests inside and outside the Upper House since past two weeks.

The march, to be joined by Opposition leaders of both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, will be held at noon. Leader of the Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge told media that protests will continue through different forms of Satyagraha. “We have to fight it. We have to tell the people why our people were suspended and how wrongly they have been kept out of the House. Our fight will continue and find other methods like a march or asking all political parties addressing to the press. We will continue our protests through different forms of Satyagraha,” he said.

Trinamool leader Dola Sen, one of the 12 suspended MPs protesting daily in front of the Gandhi statue, said, “We have been suspended as we wanted to raise people’s issues. In the last session, Opposition MPs were suspended three times. Yet, the government dragged the last session’s incidents to this session to stop us again from speaking in the House.”
While the Lok Sabha worked smoothly on Monday, Congress MPs walked out of the Rajya Sabha protesting against the continued standoff over the suspensions. Kharge said the government has not conceded to their demand to revisit the suspension.

Speaking in the House, Kharge said the Opposition has repeatedly requested the chair to reconsider the suspension of MPs accused of disrupting the proceedings on the last day of the monsoon session. “You are the custodian of this house, the government cannot dictate what we should do or not do. Our deputy leader has already spoken to you and also to the leader of the house but they are repeatedly refusing to concede our request. They are putting blame on us…it is not good therefore,” he said.

Earlier, Anand Sharma of the Congress and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam’s (DMK) Tiruchi Siva urged the chair to revisit the action taken against the suspended MPs.

CPI MP Binoy Viswam later told media, “We are contemplating various ways of protests. We have also sought permission for a demonstration at Jantar Mantar.” Dola Sen added that a hunger strike or overnight stay at the protest site is some of the other plans contemplated by the Opposition.

Opposition MPs also demanded a reply from the leader of the House, Piyush Goyal. Congress leader Jairam Ramesh later tweeted to say that the opposition had announced the walkout so that the Zero Hour could continue in the house. “But somewhat mysteriously, the House got adjourned yet again!,” he tweeted, referring to the adjournment of the Rajya Sabha till noon.
(With inputs from agencies)