New Delhi: Opposition parties, including Congress and Trinamool Congress, created pandemonium in the Lok Sabha on Monday over the demonetisation move, forcing the Speaker to adjourn the House twice in the pre-noon session till 2 p.m.
As soon as the House met in the morning, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan was joined by the entire House to pay condolences for the deaths in the train tragedy.
Soon after, Trinamool Congress member Sudip Bandopadhyay urged the Speaker to accept an adjournment motion to discuss the demonetisation of 500 and 1,000 rupee notes, announced by the government on November 8, but she refused.
The TMC and the Congress members rushed towards the Speaker’s podium and began shouting slogans against the government.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar requested the agitating members to allow the House to run, but they didn’t relent.
Kumar said the government is ready for debate on any issue, including the “inconveniences” caused to the people due to the recent demonetisation move of the government.
“Let there be debate. We in the government are ready to reply to all your queries,” Kumar told the slogan-shouting members.
He also said the “people are in favour” of the government’s decision for ban on high denomination currency and firm against black money.
The Speaker also urged the agitating members to allow the Question Hour.
But the Congress and TMC members continued with their protest.
Mahajan then said, “If you want yourself to be looked at on TV, I will ask Lok Sabha TV to do so. People of the country will also see you.”
Mahajan’s remarks were sharply countered by Congress Leader Mallikarjun Kharge.
“We are not born to be seen on TV. The situation is worrisome. People are dying. We are not shying away from discussion. In fact the Prime Minister is shying away from discussion,” Kharge said.
However, the Speaker continued the Question Hour amid ruckus.
As the Question Hour was going on, Opposition members shouted slogans like, “Gali Gali me shor hai Modi sarkar chor hai” (People are saying the Modi government is a thief), and “Kisan mar raha hai aur Modi sarkar so rahi hai” (Farmers are dying and Modi government is sleeping).
The TMC members were holding black placards with “economic emergency” written on it.
The Speaker first adjourned the House for 10 minutes till 12 noon.
When the House met at noon, the TMC members again rushed towards the Speaker’s podium and started shouting slogans.
Amid the ruckus, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu gave a statement on Sunday’s Kanpur train derailment tragedy.
“You are not even ready to hear a statement on the train accident,” Mahajan remarked and adjourned the House till 2 p.m.