Opposition protests stalls Rajya Sabha proceedings briefly

PTI

File Photo of Rajya Sabha

File Photo of Rajya Sabha

Rajya Sabha proceedings on Tuesday were adjourned till 2 pm after opposition uproar over alleged police action on protesting JNU students in the national capital and detention of political leaders in Jammu and Kashmir. Post 2 pm, the House carried out legislative business as scheduled.

Soon after the House met for the day at 11 am, Left and other opposition party members raised the two issues.

Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu said the adjournment notices received from members do not warrant setting aside the listed business of the day.

“You will be disturbing the entire House. That is not a matter to adjourn business,” he said and warned members that he would be forced to adjourn proceedings if they continued
protests.

But the members were unrelenting and continued to raise the issues from their seats.

Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu called for Zero Hour mentions but with opposition members unrelenting, he adjourned the proceedings till 2 pm.

The Opposition leaders slammed the government and the varsity administration for “repressing” a democratic movement over the police action on JNU students protesting against hostel fee hike.

AAP’s Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh slammed the police action against students alleging that it was for the first time that students of the university were “beaten mercilessly” for raising their genuine demands.

“It is the same Delhi Police that was complaining that their uniform was tainted after they were assaulted by lawyers. Does beating innocent students, including a visually challenged one, not taint their uniform,” Singh said.

Communist Party of India (CPI) general secretary D Raja said that use of police force on the students was barbaric and unprecedented.

“The Modi government and the JNU administration should understand that the students are not only fighting for themselves but also for the future of their community,” he said.

D Raja alleged that the JNU administration was trying to “repress” the democratic voice of dissent by the students with use of police force to impose its “agenda” which was against the fundamental values of the varsity. Around 100 JNU students were detained and some were injured when police allegedly baton-charged protesters as they marched towards Parliament on Monday, demanding a total rollback of the hostel fee hike.

Earlier, the House mourned the death of former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, who Chairman Naidu described as a “true friend of India” and one of the tallest world leaders.

Mugabe died on September 6 at the age of 95.

The House also congratulated Abhijit Banerjee for winning the Nobel Prize for Economics.

Rajya Sabha Chairman said Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer won the prestigious award for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty.

Banerjee winning the Nobel is indeed a matter of great pride for India, he said.

(With inputs from PTI)