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Opposition questions extending RS sitting 'without' following norms

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Opposition parties Wednesday slammed "bypassing" of rules and procedure in extending the current winter session by a day in Rajya Sabha, saying the members were neither informed nor was their taken for the move.

Members of the Congress, the and the cited rule book to criticise the extension.

Deputy said that it may be considered his "personal lapse" and a "lapse in his understanding" in not conveying at the time of adjourning proceedings on Tuesday that the sitting of the House has been extended by a day.

He said the extension of the sitting of the House was on agenda of the BAC meeting of Tuesday after a request was received from the

BAC minuted acceptance of the request, he said adding when he on Tuesday adjourned the proceedings of the House till 11 am on Wednesday, it was "implied" that the sitting of the House has been extended by a day.

"If you think it is a lapse (in not communicating about the extension in so many words), please it as a lapse of my understanding and my personal lapse," he said.

of the House conceded the rules provide for taking a sense of the House for extending the sitting but said since "an important business has been pending, the has taken a decision.

"It is being a long-standing tradition; we don't question the ruling as far as the is concerned," he said.

The maintained that the was within his rights to extend the sitting in view of important legislations, including the one to provide 10 per cent reservation in educational institutions and jobs to poor from upper castes, are pending.

When the House met for the extended one day on Wednesday, Sukhendu (TMC) cited Rule 12 of to state that the sitting can be extended by the after making an announcement in the House and the change being published in the Bulletin.

"There was no announcement. There was no notification. In protest of that, we were sitting in the House even after the adjournment (of the proceedings on Tuesday)," he said adding a bulletin was published in the dark of the night.

"This is not only abridgment of the rules but also a total disregard to the Parliamentary procedures hitherto practiced by this House. It is unprecedented, arbitrary and illegal."

He said no one was questioning the power of the chairman to extend the session but the only concern was about rules not being followed.

(BSP), Surendra Singh Nagar (SP), T K Rangarajan (CPI), Kanimozhi (DMK), Dola Sen (TMC), (SP) and (AAP) were among the members who associated themselves with the issue.

said no one is challenging the right of the government but that the House has to be run by rules.

No decision on extending the sitting of the House was taken at the (BAC) meeting and no time was allocated, he said adding this is the first time that there is no dialogue between the government and the opposition on that matter.

It is the government's responsibility to take opposition into confidence for the smooth running of the House, he said. "The government has not taken an initiative to run the House."


Sharma said it is the established practice in that no bill be brought without the scrutiny of parliamentary committees but this was not being followed.

Sensitive bills are being brought bypassing Parliament scrutiny and treating the House as a rubber stamp, he said.

SR Balasubramoniyan (AIADMK) said the was Tuesday adjourned sine die. "But here (in Rajya Sabha), all of a sudden, without taking the sense of the House into consideration, you announced that the House would meet tomorrow (January 9) at 11.00 a.m. How can you announce it like that? You never had the powers."

He said the rules provide that the chairman may make any variations in the allocation of time order by taking the sense of the House. "There was no agreement at all. You never took the sense of the House."

for Parliamentary Affairs said members should have been concerned about half of the 20 days of the session being washed out in pandemonium.

It is the right of the government to change or increase sitting of the House, he said, adding the decision to extend the House was first taken at the BAC meeting and then the Chairman holding an informal meeting with leaders of opposition parties.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, January 09 2019. 16:35 IST
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