MPs end 'dharna,' opposition boycotts RS till demands are met
Eight suspended MPs of the House of Elders ended their 'dharna' on Tuesday and joined the opposition in its decision to boycott the Rajya Sabha till three demands are met. One of the demands of the opposition is revoking the suspension of the leaders, who were punished yesterday for their unruly behavior on Sunday when two farm Bills were taken up. Here's what happened.
Besides suspension to be canceled, opposition wants assurance on MSPs
Congress' Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is also the leader of opposition in the Rajya Sabha, spoke of the three demands, circling around an assurance that MSPs won't be diluted. He said the government must introduce a Bill ordering private players to not procure produce at a lesser price than what's fixed. Further, they also want the MS Swaminathan Committee report to dictate the MSPs.
If they apologize...: Government puts riders before revoking suspension
On the demand of revoking suspension, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi said it can happen if the unruly MPs express regret for their conduct, reports News18. Samajwadi Party's Ram Gopal Yadav offered to apologize on the opposition's behalf. In fact, while suspending them, Chairman Venkaiah Naidu said he was worried about his Deputy Harivansh Singh, as protesting members came dangerously close to him.
Suspended MPs camped in complex, Singh brought morning tea
After they were suspended yesterday, the MPs took the protest to Parliament lawns, spending the night near the Gandhi statue as they held placards screaming "Democracy Murdered." Yesterday was the first time a protest continued well into the night. This morning, Singh met them and offered tea, but the MPs rebuffed his "tea diplomacy." His gesture, however, was praised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Anguished by Sunday's incidents, Singh declared one-day fast
After meeting MPs, Singh declared he would hold a one-day fast. "After what happened on Sunday, I have been extremely anguished, distressed, and in mental agony and have been unable to sleep for the past two days," he wrote in a letter to President Ram Nath Kovind and Naidu. To recall, papers were torn, and sloganeering happened on Sunday when Singh was in Chair.
Like Singh, Pawar also won't eat anything for one day
In a tit-for-tat gesture, NCP veteran Sharad Pawar also declared he won't be eating anything, to express solidarity toward the protesting MPs. "I have never seen bills being passed like this. They (the government) wanted to pass these bills soon. Members had questions regarding the bill. Prima facie it seems like they did not want a discussion," Pawar said, defending the leaders' conduct.