Rajya Sabha logjam ends; government, opposition reach compromise
New Delhi: Ending a week-long logjam, Rajya Sabha today resumed normal functioning during Question Hour after government and opposition leaders agreed to a compromise formula to end protests over Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti's controversial remarks.
Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti
The truce was arrived during a meeting of leaders with Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari where it was decided that he would endorse Prime Minister Narendra Modi's statement in the House to end the impasse as well as make a fresh appeal on behalf of the House to "all members of Parliament, ministers and leaders of all political parties to maintain civility at all costs in public discourse".
The leaders met the Chairman in his chamber after Rajya Sabha witnessed three adjournments in the pre-lunch session. The fresh appeal was made by Ansari while welcoming a Romanian Parliamentary delegation present in the House. "This House, while acknowledging the statement of Prime Minister, made in this House on the 4th of December, appeals to all members of the Parliament, ministers and leaders of all
political parties to maintain civility at all costs in public discourse, for the successful functioning of Parliamentary democracy and to uphold our commitment to constitutional values," Ansari said in the House that led to end of the stalemate.
Earlier, when the House met for the day, deputy leader of Congress Anand Sharma pressed for moving a resolution condemning controversial remarks by any minister or member but it did not name Jyoti. The opposition resolution endorsed by nine parties including Congress, TMC, SP, BSP, JD-U, CPI, CPI-M, DMK and NCP, read, "This House disapproves any statement made by any member of Parliament and any member of the Union Council of Ministers that is inflammatory, derogatory and violates the letter and spirit of the Constitution and the law of the land."
This resolution, however, was not accepted by the government. The opposition later claimed victory saying had the government agreed to this earlier, it could have saved precious time of Parliament that could have been utilised for legislative business. CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury told PTI, "Finally, government had to abandon its obduracy under pressure from a united opposition."
The first week of the Winter Session was washed out following logjam by opposition over Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti's controversial remarks at a public meeting in the national capital.