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Rajya Sabha disrupted over cash-for-votes scandal

Posted by on March 22, 2011 0 Comment

New Delhi, March 22 (IANS) Rajya Sabha proceedings were disrupted Tuesday as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) sought a discussion on the 2008 cash-for-votes scandal that has figured in leaked US diplomatic cables.

After seeing two adjournments during zero hour, the upper house was adjourned again till 2 p.m. as opposition members insisted on a discussion on the matter.

As soon as the house met, opposition leader Arun Jaitley asked the chair to take up the issue. His request was dismissed by Deputy Chairman K. Rehman Khan.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ashwani Kumar tried to pacify opposition members, urging them to take up the issue after the zero hour.

“Zero hour is an important hour where issues of national importance are raised. Later it can be taken up,” he said.

The opposition was briefly pacified. But as BJP’s Prabhat Jha was called to ask his question, opposition members again rose and asked the chair to allow the leader of the opposition to speak on the privilege motion.

Following this, the house was adjourned for 15 minutes.

As the house reassembled, the chair allowed the leader of opposition to speak, but the ruling benches protested. The chair’s attempt to pacify the Congress failed and the house was adjourned till 12 noon.

As the house met at 12, opposition members again raised a din, leading to another adjournment of the house till 2 p.m.

As per leaked US diplomatic cables, an American diplomat was told that Rs.50-60 crore had been kept aside by the Congress to win over MPs during a 2008 trust vote in parliament. The government has denied the charges.

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