The Freethought party of India (FPI) has criticized the way the voice of the Opposition was suppressed to pass the Farm Bills in the Rajya Sabha on September 20.
The Farm Bills have no mentioning of the MSP (Minimum Support Price) about which PM Modi is saying a lot. It is a matter of Legislative Business Rule that when “Division” is demanded even by one Member of the House, the same has to take place by counting the votes for and against the Bill in question.
But this procedure was sidelined, said a FPI release.In the Rajya Sabha where the NDA-led by the BJP is not having its requisite majority, the Modi Government has to depend on issue-based support given to it by the BJD, TRS and YSRCP.On the issue of the Farm Bills these parties were not in support of the Modi Government. Some of them demanded that the Farm Bills be sent to Standing Committees.
Particularly, the BJD that has 9 Members in the House pleaded for the Bills being referred to the Standing Committees. However, the Government did not pay any heed to it, the release added.
So some Members of the House got agitated at suppression of their right to demand a Division.
So they got into the well of the House and Derek O’Brien, leader of TMC, reached near the table of the Deputy Chairman showing him angrily the Rule Book that states: “No Bill can be passed by Voice Vote if a Division is demanded”."No Bill should be passed in a hurry.
This rule must be 100% upheld both by the Chairman and Deputy Chairman. They should protect the rights of the opposition MPs. They should not act as political agents of the party in power, opined FPI general secretary B Ramchandra CST Voltaire.
FPI is of the opinion that all Presiding Officer of the House should conduct the business of the House with a beaming face and with the greatest degree of humility. No “Red Eyes” should ever be shown to the Members of the Parliament, Voltaire added.