The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday announced it will donate Rs 50 lakh to those affected by ethnic violence in Assam and the people displaced by landslides in Uttarakhand and has asked its MPs from both Houses to contribute Rs 50,000 from their salary for the purpose.
The issue came up for discussion in the BJP Parliamentary Party meeting held in New Delhi on Tuesday. The contribution of Rs 50,000 by each member of Parliament will help the BJP collect Rs 80 Lakh while the party will give another Rs 20 Lakh from its fund.
"Rs 50 Lakh will be donated by BJP to help those affected by the ethnic violence in Kokrajhar, Assam while another Rs 50 Lakh will be given away to help people who have been displaced by the landslides in Uttarkand," BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain told reporters.
Bhagat Singh Koshiyari raised the issue of the difficulties being faced by those affected by the recent landslides in the Uttarkashi region.
Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj praised the party's performance in Parliament in highlighting the problems related to the ethnic violence in Assam and also raised the issue of the recent violence in Mumbai.
"Several anti-national statements were made at the protest rally in Mumbai and an atmosphere of terror was created there. Anant Geete of Shiv Sena raised this issue in
Lok Sabha and we want a clarification from the government on the issue," Hussain said.
He alleged that ministers of Maharashtra government had attended the rally and wondered how there was an intelligence failure about the number of people attending the rally and the probability of their indulging in violence.
Swaraj's Rajya Sabha counterpart Arun Jaitley dwelt at length on the problems being faced by pilgrims going to the Amarnath shrine. He also spoke on the Lokpal Bill, price rise and the state of the economy.
"Jaitley demanded that the duration of the Amarnath yatra should be increased. We feel the Amarnath shrine Board should also be reconstituted and have members who espouse the cause of the pilgrims. The government should now start working on next year's yatra to improve facilities for pilgrims," Hussain said.
Rajnath Singh spoke about the plight of Hindus in Pakistan and how they are being forced to undergo religious conversion. Some Hindu refugees had crossed the border last week and BJP has demanded that they be rehabilited.
"There is violation of human rights of Hindus in Pakistan and they face discrimination on basis of religion but our secular forces the time to raise it. We will continue to raise this issue strongly and will also take it up with our government to demand that the matter be discussed with Pakistan," Hussain said.
Harin Pathak spoke on the black money issue on which Baba Ramdev had gone on a fast. He later raised the issue in the Lok Sabha during Question Hour which led to an adjournment as the opposition created an uproar.
BJP top brass also indicated that members are likely to be announced for some of the Standing Committees of Parliament which have vacancies.The party has decided to support the Left on the power grid failure issue which is likely to be raised by Basudeb Acharia (Communist Party of India-Marxist) in the Lok Sabha.