Hyderabad: Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar invoked the extraordinary powers invested in her to suspend eight Congress and four Telugu Desam members from the sittings of the House for five days and ordered them to leave the House.
All the 12 MPs belong to the Seemandhra region and have been protesting for several days about the decision to bifurcate the state and create the separate state of Telangana.
On Thursday, parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath had moved a resolution to suspend them for constantly disrupting the House for the past several days. But on Friday he withdrew the motion.
However, the unrepentant members continued to protest in the well of the House. The Speaker was forced to adjourn the House twice. On the third occasion, she suo motu exercised her powers under Rule 374 (A) of the Rule Book and announced the suspension of the unruly members.
Rule 374 (A) says — “Notwithstanding anything contained in rules 373 and 374, in the event of grave disorder occasioned by a member coming into the well of the House or abusing the Rules of the House persistently and wilfully obstructing its business by shouting slogans or otherwise, such member shall, on being named by the Speaker, stand automatically suspended from the service of the House for five consecutive sittings or the remainder of the ongoing session, whichever is less.”
Suspended MPs named by Speaker
Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar suspended eight Congress members and four MPs from TD after they stalled the Lower House proceedings again on Friday.
The members who were named and suspended from the House sitting are: Modugula Venugopal Reddy, Nimmala Kishtappa, K. Narayana Rao, Dr N. Siva Prasad (all TD), and Undavalli Arun Kumar, Lagadapati Rajagopal, M. Srinivasulu Reddy, Anantha Venkatarami Reddy, A. Sai Pratap, G.V. Harsha Kumar, Sabbam Hari and Kanumuri Bapi Raju (all Congress). After naming them, the Speaker adjourned the House for the day at 12.30 pm.
Before the commencement of the session, Kumar had held a meeting of Floor leaders in her chambers at which all Opposition parties had rejected the motion of suspension suggested by Nath, who eventually withdrew it.
But Kumar had obtained the consent of the Floor leaders to take disciplinary action against the members if they continued with their protests, and she did so. There was no protest from the Opposition.
The Congress members remained for a few minutes in the LS chambers and then walked out, but all the four TD members remained in the chambers till 4 pm. They left after they were warned of being evicted.
Protesting against the decision on bifurcation. They only left when they were told by the watch and ward staff that they would be evicted if they didn’t leave.
In the Rajya Sabha, too, constant obstructions by TD members Sujana Chowdary and C.M. Ramesh forced an adjournment. Dy chairman P.J. Kurian lost his cool and warned the slogan-shouting members that he may have to invoke Rule 255 (ordering their suspension) to discipline them.
In fact, he asked the Opposition leaders to cooperate with him if he invoked special powers, but after seeing that they were cold to the idea, he adjourned the House to Monday.