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Oppn criticises govt for suspending MPs seeking debate on security breach

Oppn criticises govt for suspending MPs seeking debate on security breach

New Delhi: The opposition parties demonstrated in both chambers on Thursday, demanding a statement from Home Minister Amit Shah and a discussion on the matter of security breaches in the Lok Sabha. They denounced the suspension of 14 MPs from Parliament and called the action a "murder of democracy."

The opposition leaders also said that the administration, led by the Bharatiya Janata Party, has turned Parliament into a “rubber stamp” and that they are unwilling to allow them to discuss the important matter.

Fourteen opposition MPs were suspended from Parliament for the remainder of the winter session for disrupting the House proceedings over the Lok Sabha security breach issue.

While Derek O’Brien of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) was suspended from the Rajya Sabha, 13 opposition MPs, including nine from the Congress and the DMK’s Kanimozhi, were suspended from the Lok Sabha.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge said, “Having endangered national security and the safety of the temple of our democracy — the Parliament — the BJP is now shooting the messenger”.

“The suspension of 14 opposition MPs from the Parliament because they wanted a discussion on the grave security breach is suspension of democracy. What is their crime?” Kharge asked in a post on X.

He wondered if it is a crime to urge the Union home minister to make a statement in the House.

Is it a crime to want a discussion on the perilous security breach, Kharge asked.

“Does it not invoke draconian shades of dictatorship, a hallmark of the present dispensation?” the Congress president wrote on the microblogging platform.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin also hit out at the government, saying, “Suspension of 15 Opposition MPs, including DMK MP Kanimozhi, is undemocratic and undermines the spirit of Parliamentary democracy.” “The intolerant attitude of the BJP-led Union government is condemnable,” he said on X.

“Is crushing MPs’ freedom of expression the new norm in our Parliament? Why are people’s representatives punished for seeking answers on a major security breach in our temple of democracy?” he asked.

“We demand the immediate revocation of the 15 MPs’ suspension. Parliament must be a forum for debate and definitely not for silencing opposition,” Stalin said.

Congress general secretary K C Venugopal said, “A horrible, undemocratic move to suspend opposition MPs for demanding an answer from the government on the shocking security breach in Parliament yesterday.” “This is a murder of democracy. The BJP government has reduced Parliament to a rubber stamp. Not even the pretence of a democratic process is left,” he said on X.

Another Congress general secretary, Jairam Ramesh, said, “What happened yesterday in the Lok Sabha was deeply worrying. What happened today in the Lok Sabha is totally bizarre.” An MP from Tamil Nadu, who was not even present in the House and was, in fact, out of New Delhi, was suspended for disrupting the House proceedings, Ramesh said on X.

“Meanwhile, the BJP MP who facilitated the intruders faces zero consequences,” he added.

“But PM Modi and the Home Minister are silent on all this. They should come to both the houses and give statements,” Ramesh said.

The TMC accused the government of failing to ensure the safety of Parliament, while actively suspending the opposition MPs.

“Fifteen MPs were suspended, whereas no action was taken against the BJP MP who issued the pass to the intruders. Is this justice? The home minister must immediately resign and Prime Minister Narendra Modi must come to Parliament and make a statement on the floor of the House,” TMC spokesperson Kunal Ghosh said.

Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) MP Priyanka Chaturvedi said the home minister is not ready to make a statement in Parliament on the security lapse.

“We demand that the Union Home Minister give us an answer regarding the security lapse. The Union Home Minister is escaping from accountability,” she said.

“Comedy of errors. Imagine suspending an MP who wasn’t even present in the house. Yet again exposes the loopholes in the Parliament security protocols,” Chaturvedi said on X.

Independent MP Kapil Sibal said, “If they do not need the opposition, they should suspend everybody, because they do not want any questions to be asked. We have been saying that the home minister should come and explain the situation, tell the people of this country that all of us will be safe and take action against the gentleman who gave these two permission to jump into the House.” BSP MP Danish Ali said, “Instead of being accountable to Wednesday’s incident, the government is talking about the past and when opposition MPs are protesting and seeking the home minister’s statement, they are being suspended.” N K Premachandran (RSP) said it is unfortunate that a number of members from Parliament are being suspended without any justifiable reason.

“The government is taking unilateral action to suspend the MPs. They have protested against the security lapse that happened on Wednesday. It is their legitimate right to protest,” he said.

While T N Prathapan, Hibi Eden, Jothimani, Ramya Haridas and Dean Kuriakose (all from the Congress) were suspended when a first resolution was adopted in this regard, V K Sreekandan, Benny Behanan, Mohammad Jawed, Manickam Tagore (all from the Congress), P R Natarajan (CPI-M), Kanimozhi (DMK), K Subbarayan (CPI), S R Parthiban (DMK) and S Venkatesan (CPI-M) were suspended through a second resolution.

Parthiban’s name was later removed from the list.

With PTI inputs

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TAGS:ParliamentOppositionSecurity breach
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