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RS heads for washout

PTI

 

NEW DELHI

The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day for the 21st straight day today without transacting any business, as it saw the Congress and the BJP accusing each other of blocking the passage of an anti-graft amendment bill and the Chair warning members protesting in the Well of suspension.

Thursday was the penultimate day of the Budget Session of Parliament. The second half of the session which began on March 5 has been a washout with no legislative business being transacted due to stalling of proceedings by the opposition.

When the Upper House assembled in the morning, Opposition parties stalled proceedings, forcing the adjournment of proceedings till 2 pm. It was adjourned again for 15 minutes when it reassembled due to the stormy protests and thereafter for the day without transacting any legislative business.

In the morning, trouble broke out as soon as two new members — Vemireddy Prabhakar Reddy (YSR Congress) elected from Andhra Pradesh and Syed Nasir Hussain (Congress) from Karnataka, took oath.

As listed papers were laid, Sukhendu Sekhar Roy (TMC) raised a point of order on a statement by Deputy Chairman P J Kurien in the House yesterday on the passage of Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Bill 2013 by the Lok Sabha.

He said the Bill has not been passed by Lok Sabha as was stated, while its introduction was allowed in the Rajya Sabha.

Naidu then corrected the record to state it was not passed and the introduction was done after incorporating the suggestions made by the Select Committee of Parliament.

The Chairman could barely finish his statement when opposition members were in the Well shouting slogans. SP members, donning the party’s trademark red caps, raised the issue of farmer distress.

Noting that just one day was left of the session, Naidu adjourned the proceedings till 2 pm.

When the House re-assembled, the opposition members again came into the Well raising loud slogans, thwarting any attempt of government to get the anti-corruption bill passed.

Deputy chairman P J Kurien, who was in the chair, said yesterday he had allowed moving of the statutory motion which was now being put before the House. The motion sought to increase the basic customs duty on circuit boards from nil to 10 per cent.

Amid unabated slogan shouting by the opposition members who refused to budge, an agitated Kurien said “I am very sorry that even Chair is not allowed to speak”.

He said the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 was moved yesterday for consideration by voice vote and a division was sought for amendments, for which the House should be in order. He also said the Chairman has today corrected an inadvertent comment on my side which could be either a slip of tongue or inappropriate remark, while referring to the correction made in the records.

 

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