Parliament panel to probe 12 Cong, AAP MPs for privilege breach

Nine Congress and three AAP MPs are accused of breaching privilege by misconduct, protests in the well of the House, sloganeering, and obstructing proceedings.

New Delhi | Updated: 21 February, 2023 1:44 pm IST
Rajya Sabha witnessed stormy sessions earlier this month as Opposition MPs pressed the government for a probe the Adani Group.

In what may further irk the Opposition, a parliamentary committee has been asked to probe the alleged breach of privilege by 12 MPs from Congress and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) during the stormy budget session which saw protests over fraud allegations against the Adani Group.

In a bulletin, Rajya Sabha chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar cited members’ conduct, their protests in the well of the House, slogan shouting, and obstructing proceedings.

Out of the 12 MPs to be probed, nine lawmakers belong to the Congress party i.e. Shaktisinh Gohil, Naranbhai J Rathwa, Syed Nasir Hussain, Kumar Ketkar, Imran Prattapgarhi, L Hanumanthaiah, Phulo Devi Netam, Jebi Mather Hisham and Ranjeet Ranjan.

The three AAP MPs are Sanjay Singh, Sushil Kumar Gupta and Sandeep Kumar Pathak.

“…the Chairman…has referred a question of an alleged breach of privilege arising out of gross disorderly conduct displayed by (the MPs)….in violation of rules and etiquette of Rajya Sabha by repeatedly entering the well of the council, shouting slogans and persistently and wilfully obstructing the proceedings of the council, compelling the Chair to repeatedly adjourn the sittings of the Council,” the Feb 18 bulletin said.

In a separate notice, the Rajya Sabha secretariat said the committee has been asked to investigate a breach of privilege against Singh for repeatedly submitting identical notices under Rule 267 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Council of States.

“Members are informed that the Chairman, Rajya Sabha, has referred a question of an alleged breach of privilege arising out of non-adherence to the directions of the Chair vis-a-vis repeated submission of identical notices under rule 267 by Sanjay Singh, member, Rajya Sabha, under rule 203 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) to the committee of privileges for examination, investigation and report,” the bulletin said.

The first half of the budget session that ended on February 13 was marked by disruptions as Opposition MPs demanded a discussion on a report by US-based Hindenburg Research alleging financial irregularities by the Adani Group that led to a hammering of the conglomerate’s stocks.

Opposition parties demanded a joint parliamentary committee (JPC) probe or a Supreme Court-monitored investigation into the Adani issue.

Congress Rajya Sabha MP Rajani Patil was suspended for the remainder of the budget session for recording the proceedings of the House, which were later shared on social media platforms.

The disciplinary action was recommended by Dhankhar following a complaint by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

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