Ruckus over Mann episode aimed at stopping Private Member Bill: Cong

| Updated: Jul 23, 2016 01:46 IST

New Delhi, July 22 (ANI): Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad, today lashed out at the Centre for disrupting the proceedings in the Upper House over the controversy surrounding Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MP Bhagwant Mann and said this was a desperate attempt by the ruling BJP to ensure that the Private Member Bill related to Andhra Pradesh is not passed. Azad told ANI that the Congress, which was to table a Private Member Bill today in the Rajya Sabha, had issued a three-line whip earlier to get it passed. "When Andhra Pradesh was divided, we talked about special status for the Andhra area and we also passed a bill in Parliament which had many facilities for Andhra Pradesh. But this BJP government is not fulfilling those promises which we made in 2013-14. That is why we brought a Private Member Bill and voting was supposed to take place on that today," Azad said. Firing a fresh salvo at the Centre, Azad said that the BJP highlighted the controversy surrounding Mann and demanded his removal from the Parliament and eventually arrest to ensure that the bill is not passed. "Now, Mann is not a Member of Parliament of Rajya Sabha, he is the member of Lok Sabha. And we do not have to get him arrested; it has to be done by the BJP Government. There is BJP government at the Centre and the government is of the BJP and Akali Dal in Punjab. If they want to arrest him then also it is the BJP and Akali Dal which has to do so," said Azad. "If he has to be expelled from the Lok Sabha then also the BJP is in majority in the Lok Sabha and they have their own Speaker. So, they do not raise their voice in the Lok Sabha and are raising their voice in the wrong House (Rajya Sabha). So, this clearly proves that the Akali Dal and BJP stalled the parliamentary proceedings to ensure that the Private Member Bill is not passed," he added. The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day today without transacting any legislative business as the House witnessed repeated adjournments on the issue of Parliament security breach. There were heated exchanges between the opposition and treasury bench members on whether to hold a discussion in the House. The issue was raised by Naresh Gujral of Shiromani Akali Dal, who said there is a serious security threat to Parliament as sensitive places inside the complex have been posted on social media. The opposition members said the government should have taken action against the MP immediately yesterday instead of raising it in the House today. The House, which witnessed three adjournments in the pre-lunch session, reassembled at 2.30 p.m., to take up Private Members Business. However, some of the ruling bench members trooped into the well of the House in support of their demand for a discussion. Taking note of the situation, Deputy Chairman P J Kurien adjourned the House for the day. (ANI)