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19 Dec 2017

Winter session, Parliament Day 3: Protests continue

Congress protests PM Modi insulting ex-PM Manmohan Singh

The ongoing winter session of Parliament has been rocked by protests. Congress is demanding that PM Modi apologize to former PM Manmohan Singh for alleging that the latter colluded with Pakistan to influence Gujarat polls.

LS speaker Sumitra Mahajan disciplined the protesting MPs. She told them that the Himachal and Gujarat elections have ended and the results shouldn't influence the proceedings of the house.

In context

Congress protests PM Modi insulting ex-PM Manmohan Singh
Why were the Congress MPs protesting?


Why were the Congress MPs protesting?

During the fiercely competitive Gujarat election campaign, Modi claimed that during a dinner organized by now-suspended Congress member Mani Shankar Aiyar, former PM Singh with some others had discussed the Gujarat polls with Pakistani diplomats.

Congress MPs demanded that Modi apologize for making such statements that question Singh's loyalty to the nation.

For the third consecutive day, proceedings were disrupted due to these shenanigans.


Considering the protests, was anything discussed in parliament?

Meanwhile, some pertinent points were brought up in RS, before protests erupted. TMC's Derek O'Brien brought up the issue of the FRDI bill, calling it "dangerous."

The bill tackles bankruptcy and reportedly allows failing banks to use depositors' money to reduce their losses.

RS also debated whether there is a need to set up special courts to try cases against politicians.

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What was actually on the LS agenda today?

Today, in LS, the Companies bill, Indian Institutes of Management Bill and Indian Institutes of Petroleum and Energy were to be taken up for consideration. Apart from this, papers related to the department of health, S&T and environment will also be tabled.


What do these protests imply?

The protests continued unabated even after parliamentary affairs minister Ananth Kumar appealed to the Congress to participate in the question hour. RS Chairperson Venkaiah Naidu asked parties to maintain sanctity of the house and settle the Manmohan-Modi issue outside.

After clamoring and insisting for a Parliament session, Congress is raising a storm over election campaign barbs which might not bode well with the public.

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