Pranab, BJP MPs spar over Advani's 26/11 demand

Pranab, BJP MPs spar over Advani's 26/11 demand


L K Advani

Raising the issue during zero hour, Advani asked the Home Ministry to coordinate the relief and rehabilitation efforts to provide relief to the people affected by the 26/11 terror attack in Mumbai.

Advani said the Maharashtra government, central government and the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) have assured proper relief and rehabilitation to people hit by the Mumbai terror strike last year.

"But the relief was given in slow pace," he said, referring to the number of compensation cheques and other relief given to the victims' families.

The Home Minister should take initiative to coordinate the agencies involved in the relief and rehabilitation works, Advani said.

Soon after Advani's speech, Speaker Meira Kumar invited Congress MP Madhu Goud Yaskhi to raise another matter.

But BJP leader Ananth Kumar asked the government to respond to Advani's demand, pointing to Pranab Mukherjee's presence in the house.

An agitated Pranab said he had rushed to the house to listen to the leader of the opposition but not to hear from him (Ananth Kumar).

"I have come only to listen to him (Advani). Not to hear from you (Ananth Kumar)," Pranab said, adding every zero hour reference could not be answered. "Don't make it a practice," he said.

This remark led to heated exchange of words between Mukherjee and BJP MPs, led by Ananth Kumar.

"You are making politics on 26/11," Mukherjee shouted.

Finally, Meira Kumar pacified the MPs, saying "today is a very solemn day. We (the House) paid our condolences and passed a resolution (on 26/11)".

The speaker also said she could not ask the minister to respond to a zero hour reference.

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