Modi Govt suspends 7 unruly MPs who demand discussion over Delhi’s religious riots

Seven Congress MPs have been suspended from the rest of the budget session for creating ruckus in the parliament for the last three days for demanding a discussion on last week’s violence in Delhi.

The Speaker may also accept the government’s call to form a committee and examine their conduct for possible disqualification.

“Snatching papers from the Speaker’s table is utmost disrespect to the Chair. Those who snatched papers from the Chair, their membership should be terminated,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said.

The suspended members include Gaurav Gogoi, TN Prathapan, Dean Kuriakose, Benny Behananm Manickam Tagore, Rajmohan Unnithan and Gurjeet Singh Aujla.The second half of the budget session, which started on Monday, ends on April 3.

Calling it “revenge politics”, Congress’s leader of the house Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said the party will “not let up”.

“This is a government decision, not decision by Speaker. What kind of dictatorship is this?” said Mr Chowdhury. The suspension, he said, was an attempt to “weaken us”. “The government fears discussion on Delhi riots in Parliament,” he added.

Suspended MP Gaurav Gogoi tweeted: “Suspend me, but please discuss Delhi riots tomorrow. Show your accountability towards the very people who voted for you. No matter the number my party @INCIndia derives it’s strength from our commitment towards Bharat Mata and we will continue to seek justice from PM Modi.”

The opposition parties, which have been demanding a discussion in House on the violence, have been hugely upset over the Speaker’s refusal to hold it any time before Holi, arguing that the time for such a discussion is not right.

The Speaker committed to a discussion on March 11, the day after Holi.

The tug-of-war on the issue had ensured repeated adjournments, allowing little time for any other business since parliament reconvened for the second half of the budget session.

The biggest ruckus took place on Monday and Tuesday, when members of the government and the opposition engaged in a scuffle and threw paper missiles at the chair.

After Monday’s uproar, Speaker Om Birla held the all-party meeting to lay some ground-rules for the smooth functioning of the House. On Tuesday, after a scuffle between the members, the Speaker had warned that members from both opposition and treasury benches, who cross over to the other side, will be suspended for the entire session.