In Lok Sabha, disruption stalls Sushma’s speech on 39 Indians

RSTV Bureau
New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj comes out of Parliament House during the second phase of budget session, March 20, 2018. PTI

New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj comes out of Parliament House during the second phase of budget session, March 20, 2018.
PTI

Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj was unable to make an elaborate statement in the Lok Sabha on the 39 Indians killed in Iraq as disruptions continued. Earlier in the day, Ms Swaraj made an elaborate statement in the Rajya Sabha.

Speaker Sumitra Mahajan kept urging the members to maintain order but Swaraj was unable to give an elaborate statement. Though she started speaking, MPs from the Congress and Left started raising slogans, prompting Swaraj to urge the Speaker for order in the house.

“She wants to inform the House about the 39 Indians killed in Iraq. Please listen to her,” the Speaker said.

Meanwhile, in little what she could manage to say, the External Affairs minister recalled that the Lok Sabha had on several occasions discussed about the fate of the 39 Indians on which the government had maintained that they could not be declared dead without “concrete evidence”.

“I want to present the evidence today. Please listen to me…please maintain silence,” the minister said, amid slogan shouting, adding, she received co-operation of all members in Rajya Sabha when she a statement Tuesday morning.

She also said that an organisation would be holding a press conference in Iraq on the issue soon and it would be proper that Indians come to know about the fate of the abducted nationals from the government and not from another country.

There has been a 100 per cent DNA match of the 38 victims and 70 per cent match in case of one of bodies found in Iraq, she said.

But there was no let up in the continued disruption, which at one point upset the speaker as well.

“Don’t indulge in such politics. Don’t be so insensitive…this is a very sorry state…. It has never
been such a sorry state (of affairs). It is sad,” the Speaker remarked.

After Swaraj took her seat, the Speaker referred to the notices of no-confidence against the Council of Ministers.

She said she is duty-bound to take up the matter but since the House is not in order, she cannot verify whether the members who have given notices can move the motion. When she referred to the notices, members from the TDP and the AIADMK were seen shouting slogans.

As the ruckus continued, the Speaker adjourned the House for the day.

The lower house has been witnessing disruptions by the Opposition as well government allies on the issue of PNB fraud, Andhra Pradesh issue and Cauvery water dispute.

(With inputs from PTI)