Harivansh Singh to Fast Over MPs’ Behaviour, PM Backs Offer of Tea
In a letter to the VP, the Dy Chairman wrote he was “anguished over Opposition attacks” and would fast till tomorrow
On Tuesday, 22 September, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh Narayan Singh announced that he would observe a one-day fast against the unruly behaviour with him in the House by Opposition MPs during the passing of the farm bills on 20 September.
In a letter addressed to Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, Singh wrote that he was “anguished over Opposition attacks” and would fast till tomorrow.
The Deputy Chairman said that members had engaged in violent conduct in name of democracy, tried to frighten the Chair and defied every norm and convention of the House.
“Whatever happened in front of me on 20 September has caused unimaginable loss to dignity of the House and Chair,” he wrote. Singh also wrote that he hoped that his fast would perhaps inspire “self-purification" in those who had behaved insultingly towards him.
Singh has also written to President Ram Nath Kovind over the unruly behaviour, ANI reported on Tuesday.
Speaking about the letter, Venkaiah Naidu said that Singh had written to him expressing his commitment to democracy and how he was treated. “He wrote to me that in order to arouse the conscious of people he wanted to observe one-day fast,” the Rajya Sabha Chairman said, according to ANI.
PM Modi Praises Dy Chairman’s Conduct
After openly coming in support of Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Harivansh Singh, PM Narendra Modi also shared a letter written to President Ram Nath Kovind by the Deputy Chairman.
“Every word of the letter has given new faith in our belief in democracy. This letter is inspiring and praiseworthy. There is truth and sensitivity in it. My request is, all citizens must read it," said the prime minister.
In the said letter, the Deputy Chairman has listed the "violence" and "intimidation" by a few Rajya Sabha members. He stressed he was born in the village of JP, whose social reform call changed India's polity in the past. He also mentioned how the ruckus has affected him.
PM Modi also praised that Deputy Chairman Singh had met and brought tea and snacks to the eight Rajya Sabha MPs who had been suspended from the rest of the session for their unruly behaviour but remained in the Parliament lawns overnight, holding a sit in. However, NDTV reported that they snubbed his offer of tea.
PM Modi said that the Deputy Chairperson’s “conduct this morning will make every democracy lover proud”.
“To personally serve tea to those who attacked him, those sitting on dharna shows Harivansh is blessed with humble mind, big heart,” the PM also wrote on Twitter.
Congress MP Ripun Bora, one of the suspended RS members, told ANI that Singh said he came to meet them as a colleague and not as Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha.
The Rajya Sabha members, including Derek O’Brien and Sanjay Singh, who were on Monday suspended from the Rajya Sabha for the remaining part of the current session of Parliament, refused to leave and spent the night on the parliament lawns, where they staged a sit-in with placards that read - "We will fight for farmers" and "parliament assassinated," NDTV reported.
All the eight members sat the whole night near the Gandhi statue, singing and sloganeering intermittently and refusing to leave.
The eight MPs are Derek O'Brien and Dola Sen of the Trinamool Congress, Rajeev Satav, Ripun Bora, and Syed Naseer Hussain of the Congress, Sanjay Singh of the AAP and K. K. Ragesh and E. Kareem of CPI-M.
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