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Parliament video row: Speaker asks AAP MP Bhagwant Mann not to attend sittings, sets up 9-member probe panel

Acting on the demands of Members of Parliament, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan on Monday set up a nine-member panel to probe Aam Aadmi Party MP Bhagwant Mann's video which allegedly put Parliament security "in

India TV Politics Desk, New Delhi [ Updated: July 25, 2016 13:54 IST ]
Sumitra Mahajan
Image Source : PTI Sumitra Mahajan

Acting on the demands of Members of Parliament, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan on Monday set up a nine-member panel to probe Aam Aadmi Party MP Bhagwant Mann's video which allegedly put Parliament security "in peril".

The panel, chaired by BJP member Kirit Somaiya, has been asked to submit its report by August 3, while Mann has time till tomorrow morning to submit his explanation to the committee.

Meanwhile, the MP from Punjab’s Sangrur has been asked not to attend the House sittings till a decision on the matter is reached.

"The act of the member of audio-visual recording of the Parliament and posting it on the social media puts the security of Parliament in peril," the Speaker said, adding that several members had expressed concern over the issue on Friday last.

The member is "advised not to attend the sittings of the House" until a decision is taken in the matter, Mahajan said.

Mann was not present in the House.

"The inquiry committee shall inquire into the serious security implications and related aspects.... (and) suggest suitable remedial measures to avoid recurrence of such incidents in future and recommend appropriate action in the matter," the Speaker said.

Apart from chairperson Somaiya, the panel has two other BJP members -- Meenakshi Lekhi and Satyapal Singh. Others are Anandrao Adsul (Shiv Sena), B Mahtab (BJD), Ratna De (TMC), Thota Narasimham (TDP), K C Venugopal (Cong) and P Venugopal (AIADMK).

"The committee is requested to examine the matter expeditiously and submit its report not later than August 3, 2016," Mahajan said.

Mann has been asked to submit his "statement/explanation" regarding the matter by 10.30 AM tomorrow before the panel."

The panel would look into the serious security implications and related aspects "germane to and arising out of the conduct of audio-visual recording around Parliament House by Mann on July 21, 2016 and subsequent uploading of the said audio-visual recording by him on social media".

Besides, it would suggest suitable remedial measures to avoid recurrence of such incidents in future and recommend appropriate action in the matter, she said.

"The committee is authorised to follow its own procedure. The report of the committee will be presented to the House for its consideration," the Speaker said.

Mahajan said Parliament, which is the sanctum sanctorum, was attacked in 2001 and 13 security men and parliamentary personnel had sacrified their lives.

"After the attack, the security arrangements for the Parliament were reviewed and the complete security apparatus, security systems and procedures have been completely overhauled to secure the Parliament," she said.

In the light of the serious security implciations and consequences of the member's action, Mahajan said she had given assurance that she would look into the matter.

"In view of the extreme gravity of the matter, I have discussed it with the leaders of political parties in Lok Sabha and all of them have unanimously agreed to the course of action I propose to take," the Speaker said as he announced the setting up of the inquiry panel.

On July 21, the AAP MP had come under attack for doing a Facebook live where he recorded his journey from his home to Parliament, including the security checks.
 
In the video, Mann was even heard narrating the security procedures that Members of Parliament are subjected to while entering the Parliament building.

A defiant Mann had initially refused to remove the video or apologise for it and said, “I do not think I did anything wrong. I did it today and I will do It tomorrow until Lok Sabha Speaker sends me a notice in this regard.”

Next day, several members raised the matter alleging serious breach of security of the Parliament House by the improper conduct of Mann.

Mann was summoned by the Lok Sabha Speaker after other members raised the issue in the Parliament.

After meeting Sumitra Mahajan, Mann removed the controversial video from his Facebook account and also offered an unconditional apology.

However, Mahajan said that Mann’s apology was not enough to resolve this matter as it was very sensitive and related to security of the Parliament.

“When he met me, he said he is ready to apologise, but this issue isn’t something that can be resolved by mere apology. All Parliament members are agitated, the issue won’t be resolved by a simple apology. It’s a matter of security of the Parliament. Action should be taken,” Sumitra Mahajan said after meeting Mann.

Two police complaints were also filed against the AAP MP at the Parliament Street police station for filming the security blockades of Parliament.

(With PTI inputs)

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