Rajya Sabha disrupted over Arunachal governor issue 

New Delhi, Dec 16 (IANS) The Rajya Sabha was disrupted on Wednesday as Congress members sought the sacking of the Arunachal Pradesh governor.

The house functioned for around one hour in the morning, as opposition members questioned the government’s decision to increase the excise duty on petrol by 30 paise.

However, soon after Jaitley responded to the opposition’s queries, Congress members demanded the sacking of Arunachal Pradesh Governor Jyoti Prashad, accusing him of “murdering democracy”.

The Congress has alleged that the governor has been interfering with the activities of the state government.

The Congress, which is in power in Arunachal Pradesh, has slammed the governor for his suo motu convening of the assembly session, alleging the agenda for the house set by him was for partisan reason to topple the Congress government in the state.

In the din, the house was adjourned for half an hour by Chairman M. Hamid Ansari, and then adjourned again till 2 p.m.

Post lunch, Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien tried to take up legislative business.

However, Congress member Pramod Tiwari stood up and said he has given a notice over the issue.

“Every legislature functions as per Constitution… The house is adjourned till January, before that, the governor reconvenes it, which he has no right to do,” Tiwari said, adding that he was not criticising the governor or the speaker of the state assembly.

“He cannot call session. As per constitution, only when council of ministers passes the proposal, assembly is called. He also fixed agenda,” he said.

Kurien urged the Congress member to move a “substantive motion” to discuss the issue.

The Congress was backed by the CPI-M, with party leader Sitaram Yechury saying the governor cannot be discussed, but the action can be discussed.

“Issue is not discussing governor, what we want to discuss is governnor’s action,” Yechury said.

“I am saying that can be discussed, only move substantive discussion,” said Kurien.

Yechury said that a motion has been moved by CPI-M member K.N. Balgopal.

Kurien then informed the house that the notice is under consideration of the chairman.

Congress members then trooped near the chairman’s podium, raising slogans. The house was then adjourned till 3 p.m.

When the house met again, the protests continued.

Social Justice Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot tried to take up the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill.

The government wanted to get the bill passed in the din, and earlier in the day Bahujan Samaj Party leader Mayawati too said the “important bill” can be passed without discussion.

“I had requested it is an important bill, as soon as the bill is passed it will be good. It is about welfare of SCs/STs. There are atrocities and perpetrators are not punished, we have made changes in this bill,” Gehlot said when moving the bill.

Congress leader Anand Sharma, however, objected to passing the bill in the din.

Kurien asked the Congress to cooperate, but the sloganeering continued.

The house was then adjourned for the day without passing the bill.

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