Noisy scenes force Speaker to adjourn Lok Sabha
There was uproar in the Lok Sabha for over an hour on Thursday
when the Opposition and ruling parties traded sharp exchanges over a breach of privilege issue, which a Bahujan Samaj Party member sought to raise. Speaker Ganti Mohana Chandra Balayogi disallowed it.
Balayogi adjourned the House twice, the second time till 1400 hours.
It all started at 1100 hours, when Arif Mohammed Khan brought to the Speaker's notice that he had given a breach of privilege notice regarding an offer of bribe to one of his colleagues for 'extending support to a BJP-led government'.
The Speaker initially allowed Khan's submission, and
the latter started narrating the incident.
Immediately after Atal Bihari Vajpayee was elected BJP parliamentary leader, Khan said, he could submit only a list of 243 supporters to President K R Narayanan. Following this, an Uttar Pradesh minister called one of the BSP members and offered Rs 500 million and a berth in the
Cabinet in return for supporting the BJP, the BSP leader alleged.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Madan Lal Khurana and his deputy Ram Naik objected to Khan's remarks, saying these could not be discussed in the House.
Khan continued to state that the government was a minority one.
Right from the first day, the BJP was trying
to influence BSP members, he claimed.
''I just want to bring to the notice of the House that the
conscience of the members was influenced by power,'' he added.
Amidst interruptions from the ruling benches, Khan continued to
speak. Information and Broadcasting Minister Sushma Swaraj pleaded with the Speaker not to allow him.
Naik said, ''When a confidence motion is to be discussed in the
House on Friday, there is no necessity for any member to argue
whether it was a majority or minority government. A notice for breach of privilege has to be first studied before allowing the member to continue.''
Congress leader Sharad Pawar said Khan should be allowed to speak.
Khurana said the BSP member had mentioned the name of an UP
minister who was not present in the House.
Khan, meanwhile, continued with his allegations.
Amidst pandemonium, the Speaker said he would be giving his ruling on the admissibility of Khan's notice. He had a hard time controlling the House and, after more than an hour, ruled he was disallowing the BSP member's notice.
"The case of the honourable member is that there has been attempt on the part of Mr Kalyan Singh, chief minister, Uttar Pradesh, Mr Kalraj Mishra and Mr Lalji Tandon to wrongfully and in corrupt manner to influence a member of the House. Ms Mayawati, Mr Akbar Ahmed, and Shri Arif Mohammad Khan have not produced any evidence. Mere allegations by members do not amount to any prima facie case," he said, "So the notice is inadmissible. I disallow it."
A defiant Opposition continued to disrupt the proceedings and
the Speaker adjourned the House. When the members reassembled at
1300 hours, the scene was no different and the Lok Sabha
was adjourned till 1400 hours.
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