Rajya Sabha Chairman Invites Congress Chief For Meet Over MPs' Suspension

Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar on Saturday invited Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge to his residence on December 25 for an interaction on the issue of disruptions in Parliament and the suspension of opposition MPs.

Rajya Sabha Chairman Invites Congress Chief For Meet Over MPs' Suspension

Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar on Saturday invited Congress chief Mallikarjun Kharge to his residence on December 25 for an interaction on the issue of disruptions in Parliament and the suspension of opposition MPs, saying despite his repeated requests, such a meeting could not happen during the Winter session.

The vice president said the disorder in the House was deliberate and part of a strategy. "I do not seek to embarrass you by indicating the predetermined role of the main opposition party in this communication, but will share with you when I have the benefit of interaction with you," he said.

In a fresh letter to Kharge, who is the leader of opposition in the House, Dhankhar wrote, "We need to move ahead" and invited him for an interaction on December 25 "or a time of your convenience" at his official residence.

Responding to Kharge's December 22 letter, the Rajya Sabha chairperson said he wished that the Congress leader's assertion that "we firmly believe in fostering dialogue and discussion" was reflected in actions in the House.

"During the entire session, despite my repeated requests, in the House and by way of written communications to secure your indulgence for interaction, the same did not fructify," he wrote.

Dhankhar said the premise of suspensions, contrary to Kharge's stance, was deliberate disorder in the House by way of sloganeering, raising placards, entering the well of the House and gesticulating towards the Chair.

"Before taking the unpleasant step, all efforts and initiatives were exhausted at my end to secure order in the House, including by way of brief adjournments and seeking interactions in my Chamber," he said.

Kharge had on Friday told Dhankhar that the suspension of MPs on such a large scale was detrimental to the core principles of India's parliamentary democracy.

In his letter to Dhankhar, Kharge had said he was pained and agonised at the suspension of so many MPs and felt frustrated and disheartened.

The Congress president was responding to an earlier letter by Dhankhar in which he had said rendering the House dysfunctional by making a demand to the Chair that cannot be acceded was unfortunate and against public interest.

The Rajya Sabha was adjourned sine die on Thursday, a day ahead of the scheduled end of Parliament's Winter session.

During the Winter session, 46 MPs were suspended from the Rajya Sabha for unruly behaviour and misconduct.

The Winter session began on December 4 and was scheduled to conclude on December 22. PTI NAB SMN SMN