Din in House over snooping row, farm laws continues
Opposition parties’ protests against the Pegasus snooping row and the three farm laws,marred another day of the monsoon session of Parliament even as the government managed to clear key bills in the two houses.
Amid the continuous shouting and sloganeering from Opposition members, the Rajya Sabha passed the Factoring Regulation (Amendment) Bill, 2021, which aims to help the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector in the availability of working capital, while agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar was able to introduce the Coconut Development Board (Amendment) Bill.
In the Lok Sabha, members of the Bharatiya Janata Party led protests, demanding an apology from Opposition leaders for throwing papers on the Chair.
Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said on Thursday that he was “saddened” by the incident and warned of a strict action against “habitual offenders” of the Parliamentary rituals. “I am very hurt over the incident that occurred on July 28. Flinging papers towards the Chair, disregarding the Chair is not in line with the parliamentary practices.” “If this continues, I’ll have to take any action against those members in order to maintain the decorum of the House,” he added.
While Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha, said the Opposition has not been able to put forth its point due to the adamant attitude of the government, parliamentary affairs minister Prahlad Joshi hit back, saying that “they (Opposition) threw big bundles of papers towards us, the chair and the media… do they not want to even apologize to the chair?”
Earlier in the day, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi also took a jibe at the Centre over the issues, saying that they “were not allowing” the Opposition to raise the issues of “national importance.”
The Congress also accused the government of hiding from discussing Pegasus because they have “a lot to hide”.
“I am making a proclamation here that today you discuss Pegasus, tomorrow we will discuss everything. Why are you avoiding discussing Pegasus? They are hiding, they have much to hide,” said Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi during a press conference.
The lower house later passed two bills before the proceedings were adjourned for the day amid continuous protests by Opposition members. The Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India (Amendment) Bill 2021 and The Inland Vessels Bill, 2021 were passed without debate.
(With agency inputs)