Kamal Nath condemns snatching of Quota Bill

Last Updated: Wed, Dec 19, 2012 11:40 hrs

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath on Wednesday termed as extremely unfortunate the snatching of the quota for promotions bill inside the Lok Sabha by a Samajwadi Party (SP) MP, saying it is a sad day for parliamentary democracy and the incident should be condemned in the strongest possible words.

"Today is a very unfortunate day for parliamentary democracy. And the incident, which has taken place, is deplorable in the strongest possible words. Parliamentary democracy means that you in a discussion or debate oppose something you do not want, vote against it," Nath told mediapersons outside the Parliament here.

"But a process, which frustrates the functioning of parliamentary democracy that you block the house because you do not want it. It sets precedence that if there are 10 members or 20 members, who oppose it; whereas the majority of the House may want it the house can be held to ransom. It's extremely unfortunate and it's a sad day for parliamentary democracy. Everyone should inside and outside the House condemn this in the strongest possible words," he added.

The Parliamentary Affairs Minister also made it clear that the government wants to move the Quota Bill tomorrow.

"We want to strengthen the parliamentary process and the parliamentary process is a participatory process, it is not a process where you settle issues on the streets," he said.

A Samajwadi Party MP literally stopped the Lok Sabha proceedings mid-way today when he snatched the quota for promotions bill from the hands of Minister of State in Prime Minister's Office V. Narayanasamy, who was reading it out.

Congress President Sonia Gandhi tried to grab the Quota Bill back from Samajwadi Party MP Yashvir Singh, who had earlier snatched it from Narayanasamy. Senior Congress MPs rushed to their party chief's side to help.

Samajwadi Party MP Neeraj Sekhar later tore the Quota Bill inside the Lok Sabha.

The lower house has been adjourned for the day amid much uproar.

The quota bill, which seeks to provide reservation in government job promotions for Dalits and tribals has already been passed by the Rajya Sabha and was to have come up for a vote in the Lok Sabha today.

The Lok Sabha was adjourned twice earlier today after uproar over the Quota Bill, when Samajwadi Party members stormed the Well of the Lok Sabha in protest against the Bill.

The Samajwadi Party lawmakers raised slogans 'promotion mein aarakshan, nahi chalega, nahi chalega' (we do not want reservation in promotions) inside the Lok Sabha earlier in the day.

The constitutional amendment for reservation in promotion for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes government employees was taken up for discussion and vote in the Lok Sabha today.

The Rajya Sabha has already passed the quota bill. Despite strong opposition from the Samajwadi Party (SP), the bill was passed by a majority vote of 184 for and eight against out of the total number of 192 votes.

Samajwadi Party (SP) supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav, who has termed the proposed legislation on SC/ST quota in promotion to be anti-national, has hinted at withdrawing support from the Congress-led UPA Government if the bill is passed.

The quota bill was introduced in the Rajya Sabha in the Monsoon Session, but could not be taken up due to disruption on coal block issue.

Mayawati-led Bahujan Samaj Party has been demanding that the bill be passed, but the Samajwadi Party (SP) is opposing it. (ANI)

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