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Onus on speaker to ensure Lok Sabha is smooth: Congress

The onus will be on Speaker Om Birla to ensure smooth functioning of the House, especially on a day when Union home minister Amit Shah is slated to introduce the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, the Congress party believes.

ET Bureau|
Dec 08, 2019, 11.17 PM IST
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After Friday’s heated exchange between the two parties during a meeting in the Speaker’s chamber, Congress floor leaders on Sunday resolved to repeat their rejection in the Lok Sabha of the government’s demand for apology from Congress MPs TN Prathapan and Dean Kuriakose.
NEW DELHI: Ruling BJP’s plan to move a resolution in the Lok Sabha on Monday seeking suspension of two Congress MPs for their alleged ‘threatening behaviour’ towards Union minister Smriti Irani has worked up the opposition party.

In response, Congress floor leaders have decided to dismiss the charge as ‘fabricated and an attempt to bulldoze the opposition’. The onus will be on Speaker Om Birla to ensure smooth functioning of the House, especially on a day when Union home minister Amit Shah is slated to introduce the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, a senior Congress leader said.

After Friday’s heated exchange between the two parties during a meeting in the Speaker’s chamber, Congress floor leaders on Sunday resolved to repeat their rejection in the Lok Sabha of the government’s demand for apology from Congress MPs TN Prathapan and Dean Kuriakose. BJP has accused them of ‘threatening Irani’ during Friday’s House debate on Unnao rape case. Congress and the two party MPs claimed they didn’t enter the well of the House and they were only protesting against the tone and tenor of minister Irani.

“The ruling side’s allegations against our MPs are exaggerated and fabricated. There is no question of them apologising in the House. Any action by ruling side in this connection will aggravate the situation in the House and will have serious consequences,” Congress floor leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury told ET on Sunday.

Chowdhury further said: “The real issue here is the manner in which the Speaker’s decision was changed by presiding chairperson Meenakshi Lekhi of BJP on Friday.”

Chowdhury said the Speaker had ‘closed the issue’ of BJP protest against the two MPs and ‘moved on’ by allowing BJP MP Nishikant Dubey to speak on a different matter before adjourning the House for lunch on Friday. He added: “But when the House reassembled, we saw Meenakhsi Lekhi reopening the issue and allowing many BJP MPs to repeat the false allegation and then adjourning the House abruptly. That was a clear violation of the Speaker’s earlier decision on the matter.” Congress has also reached out to other opposition parties for ‘collective resistance’.

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