Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu flagged the issue of repeated adjournments in the house, at the same time urging members to raise the matters on the floor of the house in accordance with the rules and procedures.
“I am deeply concerned with the negative public perception of this august House on account of forced adjournments and that too quite frequently over the years, which frequently follows a pattern. A pattern aimed at not allowing the House to function smoothly, come what may,” he said.
The Chairman’s observations came on Tuesday evening while the house was debating on Motion of Thanks to the President’s address.
“…leaders of several parties have conveyed their anguish to me over how they are being deprived of their right to raise issue of concern to them as some parties strategise for disruptions leading to forced adjournments,” the Chairman said.
The proceedings in the afternoon saw protest by the Opposition over long adjournments in last two days, following which they announced the boycotting of house for a day on Tuesday.
The members of Congress, Trinamool Congress, NCP, DMK, Samajwadi Party, CPI(M), CPI and the Aam Aadmi Party were not present in the house when Chairman made his remarks.
Talking further on the issue, Chairman Naidu also listed the number of Zero Hour admissions by the members and the loss of debate time due to adjournments owing to protest.
“I have admitted a total of 42 zero hour admissions during the last three working days i.e 2nd, 5th and 6th of this month. Only one could make the submission. Who is to be held responsible for denying 41 members of their right to bring their concerns to the notice of this august house and to the Government,” he said.
Flagging the “pattern” of disruptions, the Chairman noted that frequent adjournments are adversely impacting the image and credibility of this house, especially in the era of round the clock television.
“On many occasions over the years, house gets adjourned several times between 11 AM and 1 PM. In this backdrop, I thought that it would be better to adjourn the House for a longer period instead of resorting to frequent adjournments,” he said.
Apprising the house that he conveyed his anguish over the matter to the Deputy Chairman as well as the floor leaders, the Chairman said, “I also told leaders that if house proceedings were disrupted at the start, I would be left with no option but to adjourn the house till lunch”.
Summarising his concerns, the Rajya Sabha Chairman said his intention is to promote a sense of collective responsibility and minimizing or doing away with frequent disruptions.
“I would like to reiterate again that it would be my commitment to allow any issue to be raised by anybody as per rules and procedures and nobody should have any misgivings about that,” he said.