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Opposition escalates demonetisation protests, both Houses adjourned

Opposition parties' attack on demonetization continued to rock both houses of Parliament on the second day of the Winter session.
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A united opposition on Thursday escalated their attacks on Narendra Modi-led NDA government, demanding for a debate on Rs 500 and Rs 1000 ban under a rule which entails voting, forcing the adjournment of the Lok Sabha for the day after government refused to accept for the debate.

The upper house also witnessed the similar chaos as opposition member raised slogan against Prime Minister Narendra Modi on government’s decision to demonetise the high currency notes. They even vowed they would not let the House function till Modi himself came to took part in the demonetisation debate, forcing Rajya Sabha to adjourn for the day. Speaker P J Kurien adjourns the Rajya Sabha till Friday.

In Lok Sabha, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said the government was willing to debate the issue under Rule 193, which does not entail voting, as it did not want two voices to emerge from Parliament, drawing incessant protests from the opposition.

A day after the house was adjourned on Wednesday as of respect for a sitting member who had passed away in August, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan adjourned today’s proceedings for the day after a 25-minute adjournment earlier.

Soon after the house started procedding, Trinamool Congress leader Sudip Bandhyopadhyay said his party wanted to move an adjournment motion.

Mallikarjun Kharge , leader of the Congress party in Lok Sabha, said his party too wanted to move a similar motion to discuss the “hardship being faced by the people and the economic disruption and the failure of the government to redress the plight of the people.”

He  went on to say that another issue his party wanted to flag was the “leakage” of the information on demonetisation before it came into force.

The Question Hour between 1100 hours and noon went on as oppostion leaders including those from Congress, TMC, the Left, SP and RJD, continued vociferous protests and sloganeering.

“We all want a discussion under the Rule 56 so that we can know what is the stand of all parties when they vote. Then everyone will participate,” Kharge said.

After the Question Hour, the Speaker said she had disallowed all the adjournment notices, including one moved by BJP ally SAD.

Mahajan said she was ready to allow a discussion but not amid such a din and added that all parties will have to decide on its modalities.

As opposition mmbers raised slogans like “Pradhan Mantri jawab do…” and “shame-shame”, the Speaker continued with the Question Hour.

In Rajya Sabha, opposition leader Ghulam Nabi Azad lambasted the Bharatiya Janata Party, saying that,”You (BJP) attend marriages and functions in Pakistan and lay out red carpets for them, and you are saying this to us?”.

Reacting to the allegation, BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu said, “Leader of opposition is insulting nation by making such remarks by comparing this with Pakistan sponsored terror attacks, should apologise.”

The rulling-party also slams the oppostion for criticising the government’s move to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes, an attempt, which PM Modi, claims to be surgical strike to black money.

Naidu ask oppositiong if they want to support Pak-sponsored terrorism. “Do you want to save Pakistan, do you want to give certificate to Pakistan,” Naidu asked.

Rejecting all statements from the government, congress leaders said they they won’t let the House function till Prime Minister Narendra Modi comes to the Rajya Sabha to witness the debate on note ban.

In the wake of demonetisation and more than 30 reported death due to the ban on high value notes, Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “Pakistani terrorists did not kill even half of our people in Uri than those who have died due to Govt’s wrong policies.”

BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, reacting to oppositions criticism, said, “No matter what anybody says, this decision will not be taken back, we will not roll back demonetisation, because this decision is against black marketers, Pakistani terrorists and those betraying the country.”

BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi leads Centre’s charge, says his government would not roll back demonetisation of big notes at any cost.

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