Parliament adjourned; Opposition leaders join farmers' protest at Jantar Mantar
Both the Houses of the Parliament were adjourned early for the day amid constant sloganeering by Opposition parties, a trend that has continued for the past two weeks. Leaders of Opposition, including former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, then visited the Jantar Mantar to support the farmers protesting against the central government's three new farm laws. Here are more details on this.
Who all joined the protest today?
Besides Gandhi, Congress's Mallikarjun Kharge, Ambika Soni, and Gaurav Gogoi also went to the Jantar Mantar to protest. Others included Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut, RJD's Manoj Jha, and the DMK's T Siva. They arrived at the protest site from the Rakabganj Gurudwara in a bus. The leaders were seen raising slogans and holding placards saying "Save Farmers, Save India."
Trinamool, BSP, and AAP did not join protest
"We have gathered here to extend support to the farmers against the black laws," Gandhi said today. "We want a discussion over Pegasus, but they (Centre) are not letting it happen." It notably marked the first organized visit by Opposition leaders to a farmers' protest site. Parties like the Trinamool Congress, Bahujan Samaj Party, and the Aam Aadmi Party did not join the protest.
Here is a video from the protest
#WATCH | Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and other Opposition leaders reach Jantar Mantar, Delhi to extend support to farmers in their protest against farm laws by raising slogans with a placard 'Save Farmers, Save India' pic.twitter.com/VMyi4ShlYo— ANI (@ANI) August 6, 2021
Parliament Session marred by Opposition uproar
Since the Monsoon Session of the Parliament began on July 19, little work has been done due to Opposition protests over several key issues - including the farmers' protest and the Pegasus scandal. The disruptions have caused a wastage of over Rs. 130 crore of taxpayers' money. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party have attacked the Opposition for stalling the Parliament.
What is the farmers' protest all about?
Thousands of farmers have been protesting in and around Delhi against three new agricultural laws. They are currently holding a "Kisan Parliament (Farmers' Parliament)" at the Jantar Mantar near the Parliament, demanding a roll-back of the laws. Opposition parties, including the Congress and former BJP ally Shiromani Akali Dal, have been calling for a discussion on the matter in the Parliament.
What is the Pegasus snooping issue?
Phone numbers of more than 300 Indian activists, journalists, Opposition leaders, among others, were hacked using the spyware program Pegasus, according to an investigation by media organizations around the world. The developers of the spyware say they only supply the product to vetted government clients and their agencies. The Indian government, however, has denied any involvement in the scandal, calling the allegations a "non-issue."