Suspension of Rajya Sabha MPs: Govt says it can revoke suspension if MPs apologise, Opposition firm on its stand

Mallikarjun Kharge, Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, today said the MPs will not offer apology, alleging that they were suspended against the rules.

Mallikarjun Kharge, Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, today said the MPs will not offer apology, alleging that they were suspended against the rules.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi on Tuesday said that the government was “compulsorily forced” to 12 opposition MPs from Rajya Sabha but will consider revoking their suspension if they apologise to the Speaker and apologise to the House.

“In order to maintain the dignity of the House, the government was compulsorily forced to place this proposal of suspension before the House. But if these 12 MPs still apologise to the Speaker and the House for their misbehaviour, then the government is also ready to consider their proposal positively with an open heart,” he tweeted in Hindi.

The Rajya Sabha MPs — six from the Congress, two each from Trinamool Congress and Shiv Sena, and one each from CPI and CPM — were suspended on Monday for the entire Winter session of the Parliament for their “unruly” conduct in the previous session in August.

The suspended MPs are Phulo Devi Netam, Chhaya Verma, Ripun Bora, Rajamani Patel, Syed Nasir Hussain and Akhilesh Prasad Singh of the Congress; Dola Sen, Shanta Chhetri of Trinamool Congress; Priyanka Chaturvedi, Anil Desai of Shiv Sena; Elamaram Kareem of CPM; and Binoy Viswam of CPI

On the other hand, Mallikarjun Kharge, Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, today said the MPs will not offer apology, alleging that they were suspended against the rules. “Opposition parties are meeting today to discuss future course of action. The question of offering an apology doesn’t arise. MPs were suspended against rules of the House. This action is like strangulating the voice of opposition,” he said.

Chaturvedi on Monday tweeted “If speaking for farmers, against privatisation that goes against people, sells family silver for sarkari PR calls for suspension, then I ask: how weak are you to not be able to answer on basis of parliamentary democracy? Will continue to speak for people inside & outside the parliament.”

She further tweeted “even the rules don’t permit carrying forward taking action from one session to another. Rule 256.”

Asked about the suspension, Joshi said the Opposition has been continuously disrupting the house but on August 11, the last day of the Monsoon session it “crossed all limits”. “They manhandled marshals, tried to attack the security staff…MPs from opposition parties danced on the Secretary General’s table. The opposition has the right to disrupt but is this the way to disrupt”, Joshi told reporters.

Joshi on Monday wrote to Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu, noting that the 12 suspended members caused irreversible disgrace to the House and demanded “exemplary remedy which will not only act as deterrence but also restore the credibility of Parliament”. Narrating in detail the incidents, the minister in the letter dubbed their behaviour as “unlawful, criminal and contemptuous”.

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