Naidu says he is blamed for not checking disruptions

New Delhi: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu speaks in the Rajya Sabha during Winter Session of Parliament in New Delhi, Wednesday, Jan 2, 2019. (RSTV grab via PTI) (PTI1_2_2019_000035A)

Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday took strong objection to some MPs blaming him for not doing enough to bring the House to order for the conduct of proceedings and said he had on several occasions spoken to members to break the deadlock.

Rajya Sabha hasn't transacted much business in the winter session of Parliament as proceedings on most days have been adjourned because of disruptions, particularly by AIADMK members who are protesting against a proposed dam on Cauvery river.

When the House met for the day, Naidu appealed to all sections to allow the House to function as only three working days were left and important bills, statutory resolution and ordinances are pending approval.

"I would like everyone to understand that we are not sending a positive message," he said, noting that the House has not been able to conduct much work.

As many as 14 days have been lost to disruptions, he said. "I appeal to everyone of you to cooperate."

Without naming anyone, he held out a copy of an interview given by a member where it was said that the chair wasn't doing enough as the only handful of members rush to the Well and hold the House to ransom.

He said he feels sad about the Wednesday order when AIADMK members were suspended for the day but they continued their protest in the Well, forcing adjournment of proceedings for the day.

Members, he said, have to follow instructions of the chair.

Naidu said one section is saying that the Chairman hasn't done enough to smoothly conduct proceedings in the House.

"I have spoken to those members who have been agitating (in the Well of the House) more than 10 times," he said, adding he had also taken up the matter with several leaders of the House and some members individually.

Naidu said it is being said that there is a plan in these disruptions and the subsequent adjournment of proceedings to stall discussion on issues. "Plan by whom," he asked.

The Congress, he said, has stated that the party is blamed but it wants the House to function.

"I was keen to take action yesterday (January 2)" against the unruly AIADMK members, he said.

But Leader of the Opposition as well as other senior members urged him that they would like to make one more attempt to get the disrupting members around, Naidu said.

Naidu said he has tried hard to ensure that the House functions and yet he is blamed for not doing enough.

He again appealed to members to allow the House to function and follow rules and procedures to raise discussions and debates on issues.

The Chair, he said, is willing to allow discussions.

Naidu said he had received notices under Rule 267 seeking 'suspension of rules' to allow discussion on issues such as women's reservation in legislatures and Sabarimala temple issue but has disallowed them.

The same, however, can be taken up for discussions under other rules, he said. 

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Naidu says he is blamed for not checking disruptions

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