Friday, September 30, 2022

Farm bills row: Opposition stages walkout, threaten to boycott session

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Opposition leaders staged a walk-out from the Rajya Sabha and held a protest before the Gandhi statue in the Parliament premises on Tuesday. Parliamentarians from Congress, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Shiv Sena, Trinamool Congress (TMC), Communist Party of India (Marxist) boycotted the house demanding revocation of suspension of the eight MPs. Meanwhile, the dharna which was being staged by the suspended Rajya Sabha MPs ended after the Opposition members boycotted the house.

Speaking to ANI, Leader of Congress in the Upper House Ghulam Nabi Azad said that the boycott would continue till the Centre accepts three demands.

“We will boycott Parliament session until Government accepts our three demands – government to bring another bill under which no private player can purchase below MSP, MSP to be fixed under formula recommended by Swaminathan Commission, and government agencies like FCI shouldn’t buy crops below MSP,” Azad said.

Earlier in the House, Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu had urged the Opposition leaders to “rethink, introspect, return to the House to take part in discussions”. “I am not happy about the suspension of the members. The action has been taken on their conduct. We have nothing against any member,” Naidu had said.

The Rajya Sabha witnessed unruly scenes on Sunday as Opposition members stormed the well of the House and reached the Deputy Chairman’s seat to protest against the Farmer’s Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020 and the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement of Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020. Later, eight MPs were suspended by the Rajya Sabha Chairman on Monday over the ruckus created in the Upper House.

The bills were passed by the Upper House through voice vote. Both the Bills were earlier passed by Lok Sabha through voice vote.

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