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RS proceedings washed out over Goa, Manipur issue

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Proceedings of the were washed out today as the protested against the formation of governments in and Manipur, even as the ruling party asserted that the democratic norms were followed.

Raising the issue as soon as the House for the day, the members created ruckus and forced repeated adjournments by demanding sacking of the Governors in the two states and installing of governments there.

In view of the continuing protests and uproar, the House was adjourned prematurely for the day at around 3.10 pm.

While raising the issue, Leader of Opposition said the had emerged as the single-largest party in and but the installed its governments through their Governors.

"The has formed its governments in both and after violating the Constitution and the Supreme judgment. We oppose it. Status quo should be maintained.

"We demand that the Governors of and be removed and chief ministers in both the states should be allowed to take oath," Azad said.

Asserting that the party will not accept the governments in these two states, Deputy Leader of the in the demanded that the House adopt a resolution against the role of the two Governors.

Finance Minister and Leader of the House Arun Jaitley, however, maintained that the governments in and are being formed as per the democratic norms.

He said after the assembly polls gave a hung verdict in these two states, the formed the governments after firming up coalitions.

He said there are only two options before the Governor - that of inviting the single-largest party or the alternative coalition.

Rejecting any wrong doing by the BJP, Jaitley cited the example of Jharkhand where his party, despite getting 30 seats in the 81-member Assembly some years back, was not invited to form the government and instead JMM with 17 seats formed the government along with some other parties.

Jaitley also said that in 1998 when the Vajpayee government was formed, the then President of India had also spelt out the option of an alternative coalition to be taken into account in government formation.

"The argument given by Mr Azad has been given yesterday (by the Congress) before the Supreme which has rejected it and instead said that the should prove its numbers when the floor test is held....

"When the alternative coalition has a clear majority and they have written to and presented themselves before the Governor, there is no scope of inviting a minority in a democracy. The principle of democracy is to have a government of a majority and not a minority," Jaitley said.

He also said that the had not even staked its claim of forming a government in and had past midnight only thrown a letter into the Raj Bhawan premises to seek time from the Governor.

Jaitley said it is clear that and had hung

assemblies and it is understood that when no party gets a majority, the government will be formed from amongst those elected.

"The Governor had two options - to either invite the single largest party or to invite an alternative coalition. There are many precedents in the past," the minister said.

While citing examples, he said, "In 1998, when the Vajpayee government came to power, the President of India at the time cited both the options of that were required to be examined - to either invite the single largest party and also examine the alternative coalition formed.

"The argument given by Mr Azad here have already been presented before the Supreme yesterday, which has rejected it. The Supreme told the it will take only two minutes to show the 20 MLAs it has," he said.

Azad earlier alleged that even though the has a thumping majority in both Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, it has not even elected its leaders (of legislature party) there whereas in and Manipur, despite being the second-largest party, it displayed haste in forming its governments.

"In Goa, seven powerful ministers and the sitting Chief Minister lost. It was a massive mandate against the There can't be a bigger mandate against the government.

"Similarly in Manipur, the government was destabilised by the government of India which adopted all kinds of means. Despite all that, the got 28 seats," he said.

The members, repeatedly stormed the Well of the House, raising slogans like "Loktantra ki hatya band karo, band karo (stop the killing of democracy)".

The opposition party, which forced four adjournments before the final one for the day, accused the of "stealing mandate" in and where it was not invited to form government despite being the single largest party.

The members cited rulings by the Constitution benches of the Supreme to state that the Governor was bound to invite the party with the largest number of MLAs to form the government and prove its majority on the floor of the House.

They alleged that the Governors in the two states were "acting at the behest" of the Centre.

After washout of the Zero Hour and the Question Hour,

Deputy Chairman P J Kurien wanted to take up a discussion on the Budget but the continuous uproar did not allow it.

The members also raised slogans to counter the shouting members but they were not audible.

Just before adjourning the House for the day, Kurien tried to pacify the agitating members but failed.

First Published: Wed, March 15 2017. 16:57 IST