Sparks flew in the upper House as the opposition demanded that the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill be referred to a Select Committee. When the government did not yield, the opposition demanded division of votes in the House.
"Sir, in a democracy majority opinion prevails. Let's have a division of votes on the issue," Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad told the Chair amid ruckus by the treasury benches.
Bharatiya Janata Party members who were already on their feet started shouting and came into the aisles.
Deputy Chairman P J Kurien, expressing his inability to proceed with the division of votes amidst the din, adjourned the House for the day.
The BJP and its allies are in a minority in the Rajya Sabha and the result of a division of votes is a foregone conclusion.
The ruckus came after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, also the Leader of the House, failed to convince the Chair that a motion moved by Congress leader Anand Sharma to refer the Bill to a Select Committee was not valid as Sharma had not given prior notice for the motion.
Sharma replied that Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu had told the opposition during the Business Advisory Committee (BAC) on Tuesday to move the motion when the Bill was brought in the House.
"Sir, check the records of the BAC to see if the Chairman had said it or not... Parliament cannot be a rubber stamp of the government," Sharma said.
Earlier, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad introduced the Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, commonly known as the triple talaq Bill, in the House.
The government has got the Bill passed in the Lok Sabha, ignoring the opposition's demand to refer the Bill to a Parliamentary Standing Committee for closer scrutiny.