TMC MP Shantanu Sen was suspended from the Rajya Sabha on Friday for the remaining period of the Monsoon Session a day after he snatched and tore IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw Pegasus statement.
Soon after the obituary references and laying of papers, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs V Muraleedharan moved a motion for Sen's suspension. The motion was passed by a voice vote and Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu asked Sen to leave the House.
Naidu said that he was deeply distressed by the course of events in House yesterday. "Unfortunately, proceedings of the House hit a new low with papers being snatched from the Minister and torn into pieces. Such actions are a clear assault on our Parliamentary democracy," he said.
"Santanu Sen, please withdraw from House. Allow the House to function," the Chairman said.
The TMC members protested and raised objection to the manner in which the motion was brought without listing it in the day's business. TMC MP Sukhendu Sekhar Ray raised the issue of Sen being threatened by a minister, but the Chairman said it happened after the House was adjourned.
Sen had on Thursday snatched papers from IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw in the Rajya Sabha and tore them as opposition MPs created ruckus on the Pegasus snooping row. Sen targeted the Communications and Information Technology Minister as he was making a statement on the snooping issue.
Opposition parties have stalled proceedings in Parliament alleging the government's involvement in the alleged snooping following reports that nearly 300 mobile phone numbers including of journalists, activists, opposition leaders from India and even of union ministers figured in this list of potential snooping targets by Israel's NSO group which sells its Pegasus spyware only to "vetted" governments and government agencies.