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Telangana, demand for other states stalls Day 1 of Parliament

Last updated on: August 05, 2013 18:16 IST

The first day of the monsoon session of Parliament was marred by uproarious scenes over the decision to form Telangana even as the government said substantive and procedural issues related to the new state would be dealt with in a Cabinet note being prepared. There were also demands for creation of new states, including Bodoland out of Assam. Two members from Bodo areas also staged a protest outside Parliament building to press the demand in the wake of Telangana decision.

Both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha could not function normally as they witnessed slogan shouting by members from Andhra Pradesh against the proposal to form Telangana and demanding justice to the people of the Seemandhra region.

Due to the uproar, both the Houses were adjourned repeatedly without transacting any substantial business. The Lok Sabha was then adjourned for the day at 3 pm and the Rajya Sabha just 15 minutes later.

In the Rajya Sabha, Finance Minister P Chidambaram said the home ministry will "bring a comprehensive note for the Cabinet containing both substantive and procedural issues for the decision of the Cabinet."

Chidambaram, who spoke after demands by MPs for a statement from the government and a debate on Telangana, said, "In the matter relating to the separate state of Telangana, the Constitution of India lays down a procedure for formation of new states. Besides, a number of substantive matters have to be addressed with the formation of new state. These matters are under consideration of the government."

The issues, he said, "will include, but (will) not (be) limited to, sharing of river waters, generation and distribution of electricity, safety and security of all residents of all three regions, guarantee of fundamental rights of all residents, etc."

He said once the Cabinet takes decisions on these matters, there will be an opportunity for the House to have a structured discussion on the subject. "The government will welcome such a discussion at an appropriate time," he said.

Trouble started in both the Houses soon after they met for the day. In the Lok Sabha, soon after new members took oath and obituary references were made, Telugu Desam Party members and Congress MPs opposed to Telangana walked into the Well and shouted slogans.

TDP members were heard shouting, "We want justice" and protesting against Telangana Rashtra Samithi chief K Chandrasekar Rao's reported remarks that officials who hail from Seema-Andhra and work in Telangana region will have to go back.

Congress MPs from Andhra Pradesh, opposing Telangana, walked into the Well to press for their demand. They carried placards that said, "We want justice for Seemandhra area" and "We want united Andhra Pradesh".

At one point, TDP member N Sivaprasad walked up to one of the protestors from the Congress with a threatening gesture but was stopped by his party colleagues.

Bodoland People's Front member S K Bwiswmuthiary walked into the Well with a banner that read: "Bodoland MPs strongly stand for a separate state of Bodoland". Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath tried to pacify the members but could not be heard in the din. Speaker Meira Kumar asked the agitating members to go back to their seats but her request went unheeded. After one starred question was taken up amid din, she adjourned the House till noon.

Similar scenes were witnessed when the House re-assembled, prompting adjournment till 2 pm. The House was again adjourned till 3 pm and then finally for the day. In the Rajya Sabha, soon after the House paid obituary references, two TDP members entered the Well opposing creation of separate Telangana state.

Biswajit Daimary (Bodoland People's Front) too entered the Well carrying a placard. While TPD members raised banners against division of Andhra Pradesh, Daimary held banner that read, "If Telangana, Why Not Bodoland?"

Chairman Hamid Ansari asked them to go back to their seats. "I am sorry you can't do this. No banner shall be shown," he said.

Upset with members not listening to his appeal, Ansari adjourned the House for 10 minutes. When the House reassembled, similar scenes were witnessed.

Ansari once again asked the three members to return to their seats. However, the members kept shouting slogans in the Well. Amid slogan shouting, the chairman adjourned the House till noon. With uproar being witnessed again, the House was again adjourned till 2 pm.

The House then took up discussion on recent devastation caused by floods in Uttarakhand. It was repeatedly disrupted by slogan shouting on Telangana and Bodoland.

In the midst of this, Chidambaram made the statement. However, uproar continued after which Deputy Chairman P J Kurien adjourned the House for the day.

 

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