Younger India, that is your democracy. That is your parliament. These are your farmers. That is your future.
I do know life could also be hectic. Zoom lessons off campus. Dashing to workplace. IPL evenings or no matter else. That is why a few of chances are you’ll not have tracked intimately what occurred in parliament during the last 10 days. Yet one more lethal blow by the BJP to our democracy. Let me let you know what occurred in parliament on Sunday, September 20. Solely the info. And the foundations.
Discussions on two crucial agricultural payments began within the Rajya Sabha at 9.30, for the primary time ever on a Sunday. Three and a half hours have been allotted for the dialogue, scheduled to finish at 1 pm. After the speeches are over and earlier than a invoice is handed, any MP has the best to suggest to ship the invoice to a parliamentary (choose) committee. To do that, an MP has to inform, in writing, upfront. Two different MPs within the opposition, like me, had demanded that these payments be despatched to a Choose Committee. Payments are despatched to Choose Committees for extra detailed scrutiny and enchancment.
These payments, associated to farmers, have been first issued as ordinances. An ordinance is a brief legislation issued on an emergency foundation. Later, it have to be handed by parliament to be made everlasting, i.e. to change into legislation. Since these ordinances too have been issued on an ’emergency foundation’, all of the features of the ordinances had not been scrutinised. That’s the reason we proposed to ship these two essential agriculture payments to a Choose Committee. That proposal was rejected in probably the most undemocratic method.
The federal government broke 4 parliamentary guidelines within the Rajya Sabha that day:
Rule 37 that insists on getting a ‘sense of the home’ – in different phrases, the views of the leaders of events or teams if the Chair decides to increase the proceedings of the Rajya Sabha. Video footage of the official proceedings presents irrefutable proof that this rule was damaged at 1 pm.
Rule 125 says any MP can ask for a invoice to be despatched to a Choose Committee.
Rule 252 says that even when a single MP challenges the voice vote, the Chair should do a counting of votes. Video footage of the official proceedings presents irrefutable proof that this rule was damaged. This was probably the most disgraceful of all of the offences.
Rule 257 says if the home is in grave dysfunction, the Chair should droop the sitting. That is often carried out for a brief time frame after which prolonged. Video footage of the official proceedings presents irrefutable proof that this rule was damaged.
Three MPs, Tiruchi Siva (DMK), KK Ragesh (CPI-M) and I had submitted motions in writing and on Sunday afternoon demanded ‘a division’ (voting, not only a voice vote). Once more, video footage of the official proceedings presents irrefutable proof that this rule was damaged. This was an especially severe violation of a parliamentary rule, precedent and customized. After this ‘triple homicide’ occurred, I made a decision to enter the nicely of the home with my rule guide and ‘present it’ to the Chair. It was not the time for dainty gestures. When the federal government perverts the foundations of democracy, we’ve to rewrite the foundations of protest and opposition.
Why was the federal government so hell bent on solely a voice vote? Why was the division (precise voting) denied, not as soon as, however thrice? Had been parliamentary guidelines proven even the slightest of respect? Did the stance (in addition they wished these payments to go to a Choose Committee) taken by the TRS, the BJD and the Shiromani Akali Dal rattle the BJP? Younger India, I’ll depart that to your judgement.
That was parliament. The main focus now could be on six phrases. Save farmers. Save staff. Save democracy. The federal government, with its many pliant media homes, will attempt arduous to distract you.
Younger India, keep sharp. Keep vigilant.
P.S: The BJP even tried to unfold pretend information that I tore the rule guide. I challenged them. Show it and I might have resigned my MPship. It has been an entire week. Empty vessels…
(Derek O’Brien, MP, leads the Trinamool Congress within the Rajya Sabha)
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