Murder of democracy, says Rahul Gandhi on the abrupt end to parliamenttext_fields
After the monsoon session of the parliament was brought to an abrupt end on Wednesday, opposition leaders gathered outside the House to protest the move. Congress leader Rahul Gandhi called it the murder of democracy.
Rahul Gandhi told the media that they have decided to speak up because they were not allowed to speak inside the parliament. He added that MPs were pushed around and beaten for the first time ever in Rajya Sabha. "The Chairman and Speaker say they are upset. But it is their responsibility to ensure the House functions," he said.
Opposition leaders alleged that "outsiders who were not part of Parliament security were brought in to manhandle opposition leaders and members, including women MPs". A joint statement said that these outsiders were brought in without any provocations.
NCP chief Sharad Pawar, Shiv Sena's Sanjay Raut, leaders from the DMK, the Samajwadi Party MPs, the RJD, the CPM and CPI, the Muslim League, the RSP, and the Kerala Congress were part of the protest.
The MPs called on Rajya Sabha Chairman Venkaiah Naidu to lodge a complaint and said that they were only protesting the government's conduct, highhandedness, and muzzling of their voice.
The statement said that the government "deliberately derailed" the monsoon session despite the opposition having "unanimously conveyed (the need) to discuss important national issues" like the Pegasus scandal. The opposition leaders called out the government for its "authoritarian attitude and undemocratic actions".
Rahul Gandhi said that the voice of 60% have been crushed, and as far as 60% of the country is concerned, there has been no Parliament.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said that MPs felt like they were standing at the Pakistan border due to the alleged physical bullying. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi has called the allegations "totally false".
Several women MPs alleged male marshals physically bullied them as they were protesting in the Well of the House. Sharad Pawar said that he has never seen his women colleagues being attacked in the 55 years of his career.
The government passed an amendment relating to an insurance bill. The Congress' Chief Whip in the Rajya Sabha, Jairam Ramesh, alleged that the amendment was passed after a large security force was stationed inside the hall.