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RS Dy Chairman pulls up Minister; puts Anand Sharma on the mat

An angry Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman P J Kurien on Wednesday pulled up Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and threatened action against him after he questioned the Chair.

At the same time, Kurien also grilled Congress leader Anand Sharma after he made an attempt to raise a Point of Order, which was rejected as the Chair was not convinced with the argument.

At 2 PM, when the House reconvened after two adjournments due to opposition uproar, Kurien allowed Sharma to raise a Point of Order. He claimed that the Constitution had been violated.

His attempt to raise the Point of Order was disturbed by shouting from the Treasury benches, which provoked Kurien. Naqvi said the members wanted a debate on the issue, to which Kurien said that a Point of Order can be raised and it is answered. 

The Minister asked the Deputy Chairman under what Rule this was binding. Angered by this, Kurien told Naqvi to sit down or else he will take action against him, even if he was a Minister.

Naqvi then sat down. 

Earlier, Naqvi said BJP members wanted resumption of the discussion and did not want to disturb the House. He said the ruling members were sad over happenings in the House.

Kurien’s comments against Naqvi were later expunged, marking a rare case where the Chair’s remarks have been deleted from the proceedings of the House. During the course of the proceedings, the Deputy Chairman asked Sharma to specify which Article of the Constitution had been violated as claimed by him.

“You say Constitution has been violated. Which Article has been violated,” he kept asking Sharma. Sharma gave various arguments including the one that the Monetory Policy is the domain of the RBI and the Prime Minister had made a departure from the established Constitutional norms by making the announcement.

As Kurien kept posing his question, the former Union Minister shuffled pages of the Constitution, saying he is looking for the Article.

Sharma then said the Prime Minister had made the announcement on demonetisation on November 8 when summons for convening the Parliament had already been issued and so he should have made the announcement in Parliament.

However, Kurien was not convinced and he rejected Sharma’s Point of Order.

Tiruchi Shiva (DMK) also raised a Point of Order on the situation arising out of the note ban, which has impacted farmers. He also raised the issue of Modi’s presence in the House during the discussion.

Pramod Tiwari (Cong) also raised the Point of Order saying that Article 74 of the Constitution has been violated because the Prime Minister, as head of the government, had made the announcement in an address to the nation and so he should make a statement in the House as well.
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