Members of the Rajya Sabha will be able to wear the national flag in the form of a lapel pin in the House from the upcoming Monsoon Session in July as, breaking away from the past practice of banning MPs from wearing badges, the Upper House has now decided to permit it.
A communique from the Rajya Sabha said that members of the Upper House have now been permitted to wear such a lapel pin in the House as recommended by the General Purposes Committee of Rajya Sabha.
In its meeting held on May 3, the committee had made this recommendation with which Chairman Hamid Ansari concurred.
The panel had made the recommendation after deliberations over the suggestion of Congress member Vijay Jawaharlal Darda of allowing MPs to wear national flag badge in the House.
The convention and a ruling from the Chair in 1985 disallows Upper House members from wearing any badge, including the National Flag as lapel pin, in the House.
In 2010, the Rules Committee of the Lok Sabha had made an exception and allowed members to wear tricolour as a lapel pin in order to honour the national flag.
The Committee of the Lok Sabha chaired by then Speaker Meira Kumar had amended rule 349 under which the MPs shall not wear badges of any kind in the House except the national flag in the lapel pin, in a break from the past practice of banning MPs from wearing badges altogether.
A lapel pin is a small pin worn on clothing, often worn on the lapel of a jacket. Lapel pins can be ornamental or can indicate wearer’s affiliation with an organization or cause.
Citing the change of rules in Lok Sabha, Darda had made a strong pitch for allowing members in Rajya Sabha to follow suit.
Besides this issue, the General Purposes Committee had deliberated on various issues like discussing sub judice matters in the House and rules relating to expunging words from House proceedings in the light of their live telecast.