Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu said on Thursday said that while the Opposition was calling the suspension of 12 Rajya Sabha MPs as “undemocratic”, it was not speaking a word on the reason why the action was taken against them, which he termed as “acts of sacrilege”.
“Some respected leaders and members of this August House, in their wisdom, chose to describe the suspension of 12 members as ‘undemocratic’. I have struggled to understand if there was any justification in that kind of a narrative being propagated but could not,” said Naidu.
“While calling this suspension as undemocratic both within and outside the House, not even a word being said about reasons given for suspension, the disdainful conduct of some members during last session, which I have categorically called as ‘acts of sacrilege’,” the Rajya Sabha chairman added.
He also said that this was not the first time when members of the House were suspended, adding that such action has been taken as many as 11 times from 1962 till 2010. “Were all of them undemocratic? If so, why it was resorted to so many times?” he asked.
Furthering his attack on the Opposition, Naidu said that attempts were made to send out a message that sacrilege of the House was democratic, but the action taken against that sacrilege was undemocratic. “Unfortunately, a message is sought to be sent out that ‘sacrilege’ of the House is democratic but action against such sacrilege is undemocratic. I am sure people of the country would not buy this new norms of democracy,” he said.
The proceedings of the House have been disrupted by opposition after 12 opposition MPs were suspended from the Rajya Sabha on Monday for the entire Winter session of Parliament for their “unruly” conduct in the previous session in August. The Opposition has termed the suspension as “undemocratic and in violation of all the Rules of Procedure” of the Upper House.
The government had earlier said that it may consider revocation of the suspension of Rajya Sabha MPs if they agreed to offer apology for the misconduct during the Monsoon Session. However, Naidu later refused to revoke the suspension after the Opposition refused to tender apology.