Opposition leaders meet Venkaiah Naidu over suspension of 12 MPs
Wednesday’s meeting saw a united Opposition, including leaders from the Congress, the NCP, the Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Shiv Sena, approaching Naidu to resolve the issue
Rajya Sabha chairman M Venkaiah Naidu’s meeting with Leader of the Opposition in the Upper House, Mallikarjun Kharge, and other top Opposition leaders on Wednesday saw little progress over the ongoing impasse surrounding the suspension of 12 Opposition lawmakers.
Naidu told the Opposition leaders that there has been no indication yet of any regret from the suspended MPs. Also, senior House officials pointed out that such suspensions have never been revoked before the completion of the suspension period without the suspended MPs or their party leaders regretting the conduct that led to punitive action, an official said.
Wednesday’s meeting saw a united Opposition, including leaders from the Congress, the NCP, the Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Shiv Sena, approaching Naidu to resolve the issue.
On Tuesday evening, Congress president Sonia Gandhi held a meeting with four other Opposition leaders, where it was decided that Pawar, leader of the Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge, and other top leaders will approach Naidu to seek revocation of the suspension and defuse the crisis.
“During discussions on the suspension issue, the Opposition leaders suggested to Naidu to convene a meeting of leaders of various parties to consider resolving the stalemate,” an official said. “The chairman observed that such a meeting will be called when it is appropriate. In saying so, Naidu implied that such a meeting would serve no purpose when either the suspended MPs or leaders of their respective parties are not willing to reflect on their conduct for which they were suspended and regret the same in an appropriate manner.”
While Congress leaders Anand Sharma and P Chidambaram served a notice for the termination of the suspension of the 12 MPs, Naidu argued that the notice was not in order. “It was not accompanied by the text of the motion to be moved in the House. Naidu also said that even if any notice served was in order, he would need time to examine the same before deciding on its admission, and he can’t be forced either inside or outside the House for a decision on the same,” the official said.
“Rule 223(1) of the Rules of Procedure of the House requires that every notice in writing shall be addressed to the secretary general and shall be left at the council notice office so as to enable further consideration. On the contrary, the notice of Sharma and Chidambaram, scribbled on a piece of paper, was given to chairman Shri Naidu in the House when zero hour was in progress, and they demanded immediate action on it,” said another official.