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FDI logjam: Parliament adjourned for fourth day

Last updated on: November 27, 2012 15:08 IST

Parliament failed to transact any business for the fourth day on Tuesday despite the government's efforts to break the logjam over the issue of Foreign Direct Investment in retail through an all-party meeting.

Both Houses witnessed the repeat of the scenes that have marred the winter session since it began on November 22.

The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day at noon after one adjournment during Question Hour, while the Lok Sabha witnessed two adjournments till 2 pm because of the ruckus.

The impasse continued on Tuesday, notwithstanding efforts by the government to ensure smooth functioning of Parliament by convening an all-party meeting on Monday over whether the FDI decision should be put to vote.

The meeting had seen the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party providing comfort to the government by not insisting on voting. Trinamool Congress, which had given a notice for no-confidence motion last week over the FDI issue, sprang a surprise by not pressing for vote.

In the Lok Sabha, members of the Left and the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam carried placards seeking a discussion on FDI under Rule 184, which entails voting. While members of AIADMK and the Left Front stormed the Well, BJP members raised anti-FDI slogans.

United Progressive Alliance constituent Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam utilised the occasion to vociferously raise the issue of recent disclosures by a former Comptroller and Auditor General official in the 2G case to project itself in better light.

On the other hand, Trinamool Congress, the ally-turned-foe of UPA, sought to show the government as anti-poor.

Making a personal statement on his resignation, former Trinamool Congress minister Saugata Roy criticised the Congress-led coalition and said his party withdrew support to the government in the wake of the hike in diesel prices, cap on LPG cylinders and the decision to allow 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail.

Roy made some anti-government remarks and was later heard saying his statement had been "severely edited and revised". But P C Chacko, who was in the Chair, ruled that only the original statement would go on record.

Earlier, soon after Speaker Meira Kumar made obituary references to former members, DMK members were on their feet waving copies of newspaper reports on 2G spectrum allocation, which had led to the resignation of their colleague A Raja as telecom minister.

Trinamool members rushed to the Well with banners seeking an increase in the number of subsidised cylinders from six per year to 24.

Members of Left parties, arch rivals of the Trinamool, were in the aisle demanding discussion on FDI under Rule 184.

BJP members were on their feet chanting slogans like 'FDI Vapas Lo' (roll back the decision of FDI in retail) and demanded a discussion on the issue under Rule 184.

The Speaker tried in vain to appeal to protesting members, saying the first question listed was on 'crimes against women'.

Rajya Sabha plunged into chaos soon after it assembled for the day with senior BJP leader M Venkaiah Naidu raising the issue of FDI. He was joined by other party colleagues.

Some DMK members were seen in the aisle with newspaper clippings related to the 2G issue.

As Chairman Hamid Ansari's repeated pleas for normalcy went unheeded, he adjourned the House till noon, barely minutes after it met.

When the Upper House re-assembled, slogan shouting SP members trooped into the Well opposing any reservation for SCs/STs in government job promotions, as demanded by the BSP.

As they kept chanting "promotion mein arakshan, nahi chalega, nahi chalega" (no reservations in promotions), some members from the Treasury Bench, led by Congress leader Praveen Rashtrapal, came to the aisle to counter them.

Members of UPA ally DMK also rushed to the aisle with newspaper clippings on the issue of recent disclosures by a former CAG official in 2G case. The din lead to the adjournment of the House for the day.

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