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Reference to Rajiv Gandhi not part of resolution passed by Delhi Assembly: Speaker Ramniwas Goel

The Speaker said that MLA Jarnail Singh’s “proposed amendment,” seeking withdrawal of Gandhi’s Bharat Ratna over the 1984 ant-Sikh riots, in the “original resolution” was not adopted as he did not inform the House before doing so.

Edited by: India TV News Desk, New Delhi [ Updated: December 22, 2018 18:51 IST ]

Delhi Speaker Ramniwas Goel

Delhi Assembly Speaker Ramniwas Goel on Saturday clarified that the reference to former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, seeking the revocation of his Bharat Ratna, was not part of the resolution passed by the House on 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

Goel’s clarification came a day after a controversy erupted over the issue with AAP MLA Alka Lamba claiming that she was asked to resign by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

However, both Kejriwal and Manish Sisodiya clarified on Saturday that she was not asked to resign over the issue. 

Read Also | AAP in damage control mode over Rajiv Gandhi 'resolution' in Assembly, denies seeking resignation of MLA Alka Lamba

The Delhi Assembly Speaker said that MLA Jarnail Singh’s “proposed amendment,” seeking withdrawal of Gandhi’s Bharat Ratna over the 1984 ant-Sikh riots, in the “original resolution” was not adopted as he did not inform the House before doing so.

The Speaker said that there is a procedure to make amendments in the resolution.

“There was a discussion on the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in the House on Friday. In the original resolution, which was distributed among legislators and me, Rajiv Gandhi’s name was not mentioned.

“It was an emotional issue and Jarnail Singh mentioned the name of Rajiv Gandhi during his speech on the resolution,” Goel said.

The Delhi Assembly had on Friday adopted by voice vote the resolution which called for speedy trial of cases and termed anti-Sikh riots as genocide. AAP MLA Jarnail Singh, while moving the resolution, had mentioned Rajiv Gandhi’s name and demanded the Bharat Ratna to the Congress leader be withdrawn for “justifying anti-Sikh riots”. He had later said that the resolution was adopted. 

But the ruling Aam Aadmi Party had swiftly distanced itself from the reference to Rajiv Gandhi, after it evoked a sharp response from the Congress.

The issue had snowballed with AAP MLA Alka Lamba Friday saying she will tender her resignation over demand for revoking the late PM’s award. She also staged a walkout.

AAP spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj, who narrated the entire sequence of events in the Assembly, noted that any amendment to a resolution can become a part of the original only after it has been separately voted on by the House, which did not happen in this case.

“There was no mention of Rajiv Gandhi in the original resolution. It was an individual handwritten proposal by MLA Somnath Bharti,” he said.

The developments come amid talks between the AAP and the Congress for a possible tie-up in Lok Sabha elections.

(With PTI inputs)

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