It was yet another day of protest in Lok Sabha leading to the wash out of its proceedings for the 19th straight day. The notices of no-confidence motion against the government could too not be taken up due to the protest by AIADMK members on Cauvery issue.
The lower house was first adjourned for four minutes due to protest. The situation, however, was more or less same, when it reassembled at noon. Home Minister Rajnath Singh made a statement on Monday’s Bharat bandh amid noise.
Even before the House re-assembled at noon, AIADMK members, carrying placards trooped into the Well of the House shouting slogans such as ‘we want justice’ and ‘we demand Cauvery board’.
Citing assembly polls in Karnataka, the Centre had last week sought more time from the Supreme Court to set up the Cauvery water management board to implement water sharing formula among Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry.
Congress, NCP, Left, TDP and RJD members too kept standing at their seats seeking the Speaker’s ruling on notices they had given on the no-confidence motion, moved by some of them.
Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, however, appealed to AIADMK members to return to their seats, saying she cannot take up notices on the no-confidence motion unless the House is in order.
“I am duty bound to place the no-confidence motion. I am sorry. Please go to your seats. I have to do a head count. I have not been able to take up notices on the no-confidence motion,” she said.
In between, Congress Chief Whip Jyotiraditya Scindia said the opposition wanted a discussion on the no-confidence motion and 50 members were ready for it. “We also want to discus the dilution of the SC/ST Act,” he said.
At this, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said the government was ready for a discussion and give reply to the no-confidence motion.
“We want discussion. For the last 15 days we have been saying we want discussion. It is the Congress which is preventing the discussion. The Congress is trying to stall democracy, which is not acceptable. We are ready for discussion,” he said.
Even though opposition members went back to their seats to bring order in the House, slogan-shouting AIADMK members continued their protests in the Well. As the pandemonium continued, the Speaker adjourned the House for the day.
The second leg of Budget session ends on March 6.
(With inputs from PTI)