Congress protest continues to stall Upper House

Rajat Kain

Rajya-Sabha-protest

FILE Photo – PTI

The principal Opposition party stuck firm in its protest over the National Herald issue, as Parliament resumed business Friday morning. Once again it was Rajya Sabha, where their angry protest led to series of adjournments. Lok Sabha, meanwhile, continued with its business in the midst of Congress members taking to the Well of the house, raising slogans and later staging a walkout.

Once again it was Congress chief Sonia Gandhi who set the tone on Friday morning hinting that her party will not back down in its protest alleging the incumbent BJP-led NDA of resorting to “politics of vendetta”.

In a seeming response to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had on Thursday expressed concern over the logjam in Parliament, Ms Gandhi reportedly told the press, “Let him say what he wants”.

Yesterday, at an event in Delhi, PM Modi had said, “It is a matter of sorrow that Parliament is not running…. Democracy cannot function at the whims and fancies of anyone,” further adding that “It is not only GST but many pro-poor steps are stuck in Parliament”.

The session is a crucial one for the incumbent who is seeking to push its economic agenda with the smooth passage of Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill along with host of other legislation.

Rahul-n-Sonia-n-Kharge-Congress-Lok-Sabha

FILE Photo – PTI

Both the Houses are seeing protest by the members of Congress party since Tuesday, a day after its president Sonia Gandhi, vice president Rahul Gandhi and four other office bearers got a jolt from the Delhi High Court in connection with National Herald case.

The Delhi High Court had on Monday rejected their plea seeking the quashing of summons issued by the trial court last year in a case filed by BJP member Subramanian Swamy alleging them of acquiring the properties of now defunct newspaper National Herald’s publishing firm Associated Journal Ltd. illegally.

And on Thursday, another issue of BJP MP Virendra Singh’s controversial remarks against Congress leaders added to the protest in Lok Sabha. Like Thursday, Congress party members staged a walkout from the house after nearly an hour long protest where its members took to the Well of the House. They were joined by the members of TMC, JD (U) and RJD in their walkout against the BJP MP’s controversial remarks.

Even though, Lok Sabha Speaker has ruled to expunge Singh’s controversial remarks against Rahul Gandhi and Jyotiraditya Scindia, it hasn’t been able to pacify the Congress MPs. The Congress party is demanding Singh’s apology on the floor of the house besides action against him.

Meanwhile, Rajya Sabha too witnessed another day of protest by the Congress members, the largest contingent in the Upper House, raising slogans against the Modi government over National Herald issue.