New Delhi: A united Opposition today stalled proceedings of the Lok Sabha seeking an apology from Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu for his remarks made yesterday, forcing him to say he did not intend to hurt their sentiments.
Not satisfied with his reaction, Opposition members trooped into the Well forcing a brief adjournment. When the House reassembled, similar scenes were observed which forced the second adjournment in the first hour itself. The matter was put to rest thereafter and the Question Hour continued for about ten minutes.
As soon as the House met for the day, Naidu, aware of the Opposition anguish over his remarks yesterday, rose to make a suo motu statement.
He said he respected all parties and leaders and he had not used any unparliamentary language yesterday while intervening in the Motion of Thanks for the President's Address.
In his intervention yesterday, Naidu had taken an apparent dig at Rahul Gandhi's leave to introspect, saying if the Congress should also introspect. And if it cannot do it here, it should “go somewhere far” to do it. Naidu had also then claimed that the BJP government does not want to bring ordinances and accused Congress of having a bad track record on the issue of promulgating ordinances. These remarks had angered the Opposition which had walked out thereafter.
In the House today when Naidu faced protests from the opposition benches, he said “I only said what happened in your time and what is happening in our tenure. I also mentioned about the thinking of the present government...arguments and counter arguments are part of the political system.” Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge said the opposition has no intention to disrupt the proceedings. “He (Naidu) is a senior leader and the Parliamentary Affairs Minister. It is his duty to take everyone along...he has no right (to use such words).
It is a question of our honour. He must express regret. It should not become a practice. We will not tolerate,” he said. Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said the issue should be put to rest now as Naidu has himself clarified on the issue. Unimpressed, opposition members including those from Congress, the Left, TMC and SP rushed to the Well of the House raising slogans against the “attitude” of the government. Naidu said his remarks are on record and “wrong allegations” are being levelled against him. He said he has made “no mistake”.
Demanding that Naidu should apologise, the opposition members trooped into the Well raising slogans. As the disruptions continued, Mahajan adjourned the House for 15 minutes till 11.30 am. Later as soon as the House met again, Deputy Speaker M Thambidurai adjourned the HOuse for another 15 minutes till 11.45 am.