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Mayawati stuns Rajya Sabha; questions chairman's absence

December 12, 2012 13:17 IST
Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati on Wednesday shocked the Rajya Sabha by telling Chairman Hamid Ansari that he is "not seen" in the House in the afternoon after which the House is not allowed to function.

"I am not ready to listen to anything. We have seen in the last few days that every day the House is not allowed to function after 12 pm, It is your responsibility to ensure that it functions. Who will ensure that it functions," she told the chair from the Well as also from her seat.

"You are not seen here after 12 pm... What kind of House is this? You have to take a decision that what has to be done for this (ensuring the functioning of the House)," the BSP chief said.

She was protesting against the frequent disruption over a bill for providing reservation in promotion to the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes in government jobs, an issue that has seen the party at loggerheads with the Samajwadi Party, its arch detractor in Uttar Pradesh politics.

The protest by the BSP on the quota issue saw the House being adjourned twice before lunch.

Mayawati's remarks left the House stunned. The chairman told her that she was a senior leader and should allow the House to function. He said it was the responsibility of everyone to let the House function. But, BSP members were unrelenting.

Mayawati's outburst came at 11.30 am when Textile Minister Anand Sharma was replying to a query on the plight of weavers in Uttar Pradesh.

The BSP supremo, along with her party colleagues, came into House and started speaking even before taking her seat.

As the chairman tried to pacify Mayawati and asked her to allow the Question Hour to proceed, the BSP chief went into the Well with her party members continuing with her verbal attack.

Mayawati's remarks came on a day when the Chairman has called a meeting of the rules committee of the Rajya Sabha anguished over frequent disruptions of the Question Hour.

Mayawati's party colleagues started shouting 'Dalit virodhi ye sarkar nahi chalegi' (anti-Dalit government is not acceptable).

A visibly upset Ansari adjourned the House till noon.

When the House reassembled, BSP members again trooped into the Well shouting anti-government slogans.

On Monday, Mayawati had threatened to take a "tough stand" in case the government does not help bring order in the Rajya Sabha and get the bill passed.

Amid the uproar, Bharatiya Janata Party leader M Venkaiah Naidu took strong objection to reports on the government's plans to increase the cap on subsidised LPG.

As the din continued, Deputy Chairman P J Kurien adjourned the House for another 30 minutes till 12.30 pm. However, there was no improvement in the situation when the House met again and minutes after it was adjourned for the day.

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