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Speaker refers cases of 32 MPs to Privileges Committee
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May 01, 2008 16:45 IST

Cracking the whip, Speaker Somnath Chatterjee has referred to the Privileges Committee cases of as many as 32 Lok Sabha members mainly belonging to the opposition for "disorderly conduct" in the House.

The rare action has been taken by Chatterjee, anguished over repeated disruptions in the House, and the immediate provocation was the incidents of April 24, which saw opposition members storming the well shouting slogans without paying heed to the Chair.

Protest in the House that day was prompted by the National Democratic Alliance agitation against price rise, which found its echo in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha after the opposition members formed a human chain outside Parliament complex to denounce the government's failure to check the price spiral.

Members whose cases have been referred to the Privileges Committee for "examination, investigation and report" include several Bharatiya Janata Party members Shahnawaz Hussain, P S Gadhavi, M A Kharabela Swain, Kishan Singh Sangwan and Kiran Maheswari.

The list also include Chandrakant Khaire, Kalpana Ramesh Narhire (both Shiv Sena), Rattan Singh Ajnala and Sukhdeo Singh Libra (both Shiromani Akali Dal) as also Tathagatha Satpathy (Biju Janata Dal) and Brajesh Pathak (Bahujan Samaj Party).

The speaker referred the matter to the Privileges Committee on Wednesday, which had also witnessed some noisy scenes over during the Zero Hour prompting Chatterjee to observe that it has turned into a "torture hour".

At one point, he had told the agitated Samajwadi Party members that they cannot threaten the Chair.

Chatterjee proceeded against Pathak of BSP for his disorderly conduct in the House on April 24 by not allowing Steel and Fertiliser Minister Ramvilas Paswan to give reply to his own supplementary.

Others whose cases have been referred to the Privileges Committee are Mahavir Bhagora, Ashok Pradhan, Nand Kumar Sai, Shrichand Kriplani, Vijayendra Pal Singh, Ganesh Singh, Faggan Singh Kulaste, Bhanwar Singh Dangawas, Virendra Kumar, Ram Singh Kaswan, Subhash Maharia, Sushila Laxman Bangaru, Dharmendra [Images] Pradhan, Ramswaroop Koli, Sukdeo Paswan, Ramakrishna Kusmaria, Karuna Shukla and Nandkumar Singh Chauhan (all BJP).

Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, Paramjit Kaur Gulshan (both SAD) and P P Koya (Janata Dal-United).

This is for the first time that the Speaker has taken such a serious view of unruly scenes in the House and is acting tough to send a message that "enough is enough" and discipline and decorum should be maintained at all cost.

His earlier attempts to ensure a "no work no pay" for members could not materialise as it failed to found favour with the floor leaders.

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