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Opposition in Lok Sabha raises slogans protesting lynchings

LiveMint logoLiveMint 24-07-2017 PTI

New Delhi: The opposition on Monday disrupted the Question Hour in the Lok Sabha by raising slogans against the government over incidents of cow vigilantism, but unlike previous occasions, the proceedings were not adjourned even as the ruckus continued for over an hour.

As soon as the House took up business after obituary references, members belonging to the Congress, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) and the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) came to the well raising slogans demanding suspension of the Question Hour to discuss the alleged incidents of lynching by cow vigilantes in different parts of the country. However, the speaker ruled out suspension of the Question Hour and asked the members to go back to their seats.

“Discussions will not be stopped. The Question Hour will not be stopped. This is not the way. I have not stopped any discussion on any issue. Discussion is open but only after the Question Hour. Don’t disturb the House. You have to mend the ways,” the speaker said amid sloganeering by the opposition members.

Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, who had served an adjournment motion, claimed that people were being lynched but the “government is sleeping” and demanded an immediate discussion on the issue of the alleged lynching incidents by cow vigilantes.

The opposition members raised slogans like ‘Gau Raksha Ke Naam Pe Hatya Bandh Karo (Stop killing people in the name of protecting cows)’, ‘Khoon Kharaba Bandh Karo (Stop all killings)’, ‘Desh Ko Todne Nahi Denge (We will not allow to divide the country)’ besides others.

Interestingly, even as TMC members were indulging in sloganeering along with the Congress MPs, one of their (TMC) members—Ratna De Nag—asked two supplementary questions, and the one relating to pension benefits for Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya teachers was taken up for discussion by the House. Soon thereafter, other TMC members returned to their seats.

RJD member Jaiprakash Narayan Yadav too went to his seat, while the Congress MPs continued to shout slogans through the entire Question Hour period. At one point, they even sat in the well raising slogans.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi was seen talking to party leader Jyotiraditya Scindia who conveyed her directions to the fellow members raising slogans in the well.

Kharge was seen offering ayurvedic throat drops to Congress MPs shouting slogans.

Parliamentary affairs minister Ananth Kumar urged them to return to their seats and said the government was ready to discuss any issue and would not “run away”.

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