Price rise storm hits parliament, both houses adjourned (Lead)

July 27th, 2010 - 2:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Meira Kumar New Delhi, July 27 (IANS) Pandemonium reigned in parliament Tuesday as a united opposition demanded an immediate discussion on price rise followed by a vote, leading to adjournment of both houses. The government has ruled out a vote.
While the Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day, the Lok Sabha repeated disruptions.

As soon as Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha members assembled for the first working day of the monsoon session at 11 a.m., opposition MPs began shouting slogans, stalling proceedings as they gave vent to vociferous protests.

Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj asked Speaker Meira Kumar to “set aside all the business and allow a discussion over rising prices, followed by a vote”.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MPs joined by members of other parties like the Left walked up to the speaker’s podium shouting anti-government slogans.

As the united opposition took on the government refusing to allow the house to function, Meira Kumar adjourned the Lok Sabha till noon. The Lok Sabha was again adjourned till 2 p.m., 10 minutes after the house reassembled. A few papers were laid on the table in that time.

The scenes in the Rajya Sabha were no different. It was chaos as the BJP and Left MPs did not heed Chairman Hamid Ansari’s repeated pleas to let the question hour continue. The upper house was also adjourned till 12.

When the Rajya Sabha assembled at noon, the protests continued forcing the chair to adjourn it for the day.

BJP leaders said the opposition was united in forcing the government to stall the house proceedings over price rise as the Left, the Samajwadi Party and other parties were with them.

“We are united. We want an adjournment motion and a vote on the issue,” BJP leader Gopinath Munde told IANS.

“This issue touches the common man’s life. How can the government wash its hands off it? We will bring the adjournment motion, we will not discuss anything,” he said.

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), which in the past has come to the rescue of the government by voting for it on crucial matters, also demanded a discussion and voting on price rise.

The government has already ruled out the demand saying that as per rules only matters of immediate and urgent attention can be allowed under an adjournment motion.

“This is disruption motion, it is not discussion motion,” senior Congress leader and Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal told reporters.

However, the government, sources said, is worried more about the Rajya Sabha where the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) is in minority.

In the Lok Sabha, some UPA partners have also voiced their concern over the rising prices of food items.

Lalu Prasad’s Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Samajwadi Party have also joined hands with the BJP on the issue.

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