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Home / India News / Mass suspension of MPs not a first

Mass suspension of MPs not a first

In 2010, seven MPs were suspended when they aggressively disrupted the proceeding during the passage of the Women’s Reservation Bill.

india Updated: Sep 22, 2020, 02:23 IST
Saubhadra Chatterji
Saubhadra Chatterji
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
The first case of suspension of an MP goes back to 1962, a decade  after India’s first Lok Sabha polls.  Godey Murahari, a Congress
The first case of suspension of an MP goes back to 1962, a decade after India’s first Lok Sabha polls. Godey Murahari, a Congress(PTI)

The suspension of eight Opposition MPs in Rajya Sabha on Monday is extraordinary but not unprecedented.

Both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha have a history of mass suspensions aimed at retaining order in the House and control chaos. The two houses, however, have different rules for suspension .

Trinamool Congress floor leader Derek O’Brien and Aam Admi Party leader Sanjay Singh, Congress leaders Rajeev Satav, Syed Nasir Hussain and Ripun Borah, CPIM’s KK Ragesh and Elamaram Kareem and Trinamool’s Dola Sen were suspended by Rajya Sabha chairman Venkaiah Naidu for “gross disorderly conduct.”

The latest suspension set a new record in the Rajya Sabha -- for the number of lawmakers involved.

In 2010, seven MPs were suspended when they aggressively disrupted the proceeding during the passage of the Women’s Reservation Bill.

The Lok Sabha, however, has a higher benchmark. It saw the suspension of 18 Andhra Pradesh MPs in February 2014 during the Telangana issue under by then Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar. In November 2013, nine MPs were suspended for the same issue by the Speaker.

The first case of suspension of an MP goes back to 1962, a decade after India’s first Lok Sabha polls. Godey Murahari, a Congresslawmaker was suspended for the remainder of the session.

To be sure, suspension is an extreme step to control the House and presiding officers use it only as a last resort. In Lok Sabha, the Speaker can directly suspend an MP but in the Rajya Sabha, a motion for suspension has to be moved and approved by the House.

Raj Narain—known best for defeating late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in the 1977 elections—was twice suspended. In 1966 and 1974.

In 2010, the UPA government moved a motion on March 9 for suspension of seven members; Kamal Akhtar, Veerpal Singh Yadav, Ajaz Ali, Sabir Ali, Subhash Prasad Yadav, Amir Alam Khan and Nand Kishore Yadav for creating disturbance during the passage of the Women Reservation Bill.

Suspension orders are sometimes revoked if lawmakers express regret for their conduct.

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