People of the country have been let down: Chairman Venkaiah Naidu on the ruckus in Rajya Sabha

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The Rajya Sabha could not perform any business for the 15th consecutive day as opposition parties continuous to create a disturbance, promoting adjournment of proceedings. The Vice-President of India and Chairman of Rajya Sabha Venkaiah Naidu adjourned the Rajya Sabha for the day but not before uttering anguish over the House not being performed since it started on March 5.

He added that previous disruptions must not be quoted to justify the “present wrong” and stated hope the government will take the opposition into confidence to make sure the House functions from next week. Andhra parties, including the TDP, and KVP Ramachandra Rao of the Congress also shouting today for special status to the state whereas Tamil Nadu parties – DMK and AIADMK – elevated the Cauvery water issue. The Congress members, on the other hand, were also shouting in the Well slogans that the government was anti-SC/ST, in an apparent mention to the Supreme Court ruling on the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

After paying tributes to freedom fighters Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukdev, Naidu stood up to express his unhappiness at the disruptions. The tribute was for the ones who hanged on this day 87 years ago by the British. Naidu said that it was worrying that the Rajya Sabha has not settled its mandate for three weeks. “People of the country have been let down,” Naidu said. He added that he could understand that MPs may resort to disturbance for a couple of days to press their issues but “persisting with it for three weeks has no justification”. The Congress members opposed it by blaming the government for stalemate and alleged that it has not involved the opposition parties. Naidu, however, went on to state that while some may mention previous instances to justify the present delay, the three-week-long interruption had no justification.

“How long do you want to justify the present wrong based on past? People of the country are aspiring for change. Should the change not begin from Rajya Sabha,” Naidu said. He added that people were asking why is the House not being adjourned endlessly but said that it was not in his hand to do so. “I am pained…I am sad,” Naidu said, adding that he would not like to risk a guess about what will happen in the House next week or “if you are going to change for better”. “If you are not interested in running of this House, it is another matter,” he added. The chairman said he was willing to permit discussion on any issue that the members want, but placards, demonstration and slogan shouting was not justified. He later adjourned the proceedings till Monday.

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