Amidst continuous disruptions by opposition members, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan has convened an all-party meeting to discuss better functioning of the Lok Sabha, proceedings of which have been virtually washed out in the Monsoon Session so far. In rather uncalled for incident Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury had climbed the podium of the Speaker’s dais and banged a placard on it. Visbly upset over it, Mahajan had asked him to leave the House and named him in a statement for “disregarding the authority of the chair”.
The Speaker had on the second day of the Session warned of disciplinary action against the members who were indulging in disorderly conduct over the Lalit Modi controversy. “In the event of disorderly conduct, I would be constrained to initiate appropriate disciplinary action against erring members,” she had said after Congress and Left members stormed the Well carrying placards to protest over the Lalit Modi issue. Mahajan had said she has always provided “adequate” opportunity to all sections of the House to raise matters of topical interest and hoped that all the members would adhere to the set norms of etiquette and standards of behaviour.
Congress members are protesting over alleged blackout of the opposition protests by Lok Sabha Television. “We have been monitoring LSTV ever since the Monsoon Session started. There is a complete blackout of our protests. This never happened in the past,” Congress MP Suresh Kodikunnil had said.
The party has also complained that Lok Sabha TV broadcast only shows the Speaker and does not focus on protests by opposition members. Since the session began on July 21, there has hardly been any work except on one day when the Speaker went ahead with the Question Hour and Zero Hour amid din by the Opposition members. The House will be meeting on July 30 after a two day break following the demise of former president A P J Abdul Kalam who passed away in Shillong on July 27.