Telangana issue rocks Parliament

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New Delhi, Feb 5: Telangana issue rocked both Houses of Parliament on the first day of the extended Winter Session, leading to adjournment of the Lok Sabha for the day and repeated adjournments of Rajya Sabha.

Both the Houses saw noisy scenes as soon as they met for the day with members from Andhra Pradesh — from Telangana as well as Seemandhra regions — cutting across party lines storming the Well. Those protesting included members from ruling Congress. While Seemandhra members carried placards saying ‘Jai Samaikya Andhra Pradesh’ (hail united Andhra Pradesh), Telangana members shouted slogans demanding early creation of the separate state.

The government has announced that it will take up the Bill to carve out a separate Telangana state from Andhra Pradesh in the session that will conclude on February 21. Andhra Pradesh has remained sharply divided on regional lines on the Telangana issue and the Bill is coming to Parliament after being rejected by the Andhra Pradesh Assembly.

Government is expected to introduce the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Bill in Parliament next week. Meanwhile, Shiromani Akali Dal members were on their feet, targetting Congress on the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in the wake of renewed controversy on the issue following a television interview by Rahul Gandhi.

Carrying placards and shouting slogans, they wanted day-to-day trial of pending cases against Congress leaders Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler. BSP members were also in the Well but it was not immediately clear what issue they were raising.

Speaker Meira Kumar repeatedly appealed to members to maintain calm and allow smooth conduct of the House, reminding them that it was the last session of the 15th Lok Sabha. As her pleas went unheeded, she adjourned the House, first till noon and later for the day. Before the adjournment, the House condemned the attacks and harassment of people from the Northeast in various parts of the country in the wake of the killing of a boy from Arunachal Pradesh in Delhi.

Rajya Sabha witnessed three adjournments in the pre-lunch session amid ruckus over issues like Telangana as also scam-tainted AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal and 2G scandal.

There was uproar when the government tried to introduce the communal violence prevention bill.

Soon after Chairman Hamid Ansari made obituary references, two TDP members C M Ramesh and Y S Choudhary and KVP Ramchandra Rao of Congress from Seemandhra trooped into the Well opposing bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh. They carried placards saying “Save Andhra Pradesh” and “We Want United Andhra Pradesh”.

AIADMK members led by V Maitreyan were on their feet on the additional “evidence” coming to light about alleged roles of DMK Chief M Karunanidhi, his daughter Kanimozhi and a top police officer of Tamil Nadu in the 2G spectrum scam.

Maitreyan displayed a CD (compact disc), but what he said could not be heard in the din.

BJP members raised the issue of racist attack on a student from the North East in Delhi, while SAD members displayed banners seeking day-to-day hearing in court on the alleged role of Congress leaders in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.

Samajwadi Party members too were on their feet, but what they were saying was drowned in the din. With members unrelenting, Ansari adjourned the House till noon. When the House reassembled, Rao, Ramesh and Choudhary stormed into the Well shouting slogans.

Ravi Shankar Prasad (BJP) raised the issue of VVIP chopper scam and demanded a reply from the government.

Deputy Chairman P J Kurien said he hoped government will make a statement on the issue.

Amid din, Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde moved a bill to withdraw The Communal Violence (Prevention Control and Rehabilitation of Victims) Bill, 2005, which was adopted.

However, trouble started when Shinde sought to introduce the new bill to replace the earlier one. As soon as the Home Minister moved The Prevention of Communal Violence (Access to Justice and Repatriation) Bill, 2014) amid uproar, BJP members were on their feet opposing it.

Kurien said the bill was not introduced but was just moved and Leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley was given a chance to voice his reservations on it. PTI