‘Breach of parliamentary privileges’: BJP leader seeks action against Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan on CAA resolution
BJP leader GVL Narasimha Rao on Tuesday urged Rajya Sabha chairman M Venkaiah Naidu to initiate action against Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan after the state assembly passed a resolution against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
Pointing that the resolution was moved by Vijayan, the Rajya Sabha member wrote to Naidu that if the chief minister’s “misdemeanour and ill-conceived” statements and actions go unchecked, it will set a dangerous precedent and lead to administrative chaos and constitutional mayhem in the country.
“What (then) stops one state legislature from passing a similar resolution against another state government or Parliament, passing resolutions against bills passed by state governments to gain political one-upmanship?” the lawmaker asked in his letter to Naidu.
As a member of the Rajya Sabha committee on privileges, Rao called upon the House’s chairman to take cognizance of this breach and refer this subject for discussion to the committee in its meeting scheduled on January 3.
“The action of the Kerala chief minister is a breach of parliamentary privileges and the committee shall consider all appropriate means available to it to initiate contempt proceedings against Pinarayi Vijayan,” Rao said.
The Kerala assembly passed a resolution earlier in the day demanding to scrap of the contentious citizenship act, becoming the first state in the country to do so.
Vijayan has called the law unconstitutional, and the two main parties in the state assembly, the CPI(M) and the rival Congress, joined hands to back the resolution.
Rao said it devolves on the Rajya Sabha chairman and the committee of privileges to protect the powers, privileges and dignity of both the houses of Parliament in discharging their legislative functions and duties.
Noting that Vijayan has termed the CAA as “unconstitutional” and that it will have no place in Kerala, Rao dubbed his allegations as “unwarranted, baseless and motivated” which, he asserted, are in complete disregard to the parliamentary sovereignty and its exclusive powers to deal with citizenship matters.
The BJP MP, who is also his party’s national spokesperson, cited constitutional provisions to drive home the point that Parliament has exclusive powers to legislate on citizenship.
“In the light of above constitutional provisions, the statements and actions of Chief Minister of Kerala Pinarayi Vijayan constitute wanton and wilful violation of constitutional positions,” Rao said.