AAP hits out at Centre over suspension of its MPs from both Houses of Parliament
The reaction came after AAP MPs Raghav Chadha and Sanjay Singh were both suspended
The Aam Aadmi Party on Friday, August 11, lashed out at the BJP over suspension of its MPs from both Houses of Parliament, accusing the Narendra Modi-led central government of adopting a “dictatorial approach” to silence the opposition.
The reaction comes after AAP MP Raghav Chadha was suspended from the Rajya Sabha for "gross violation of rules, misconduct, defiant attitude and contemptuous conduct", pending a report by the privileges committee. The Upper House of Parliament also approved the continuation of suspension of senior AAP leader Sanjay Singh, pending the privileges committee report. Singh was suspended on July 24, four days after the Monsoon session began.
The AAP’s lone MP in Lok Sabha Sushil Kumar Rinku was suspended for unruly behaviour on August 3 after he tore some papers in the well of the House and threw them in the direction of Speaker Om Birla following the passage of the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill.
“Extension of Sanjay Singh’s suspension is violation of rules... This is a dictatorship. The prime minister is frustrated," AAP Rajya Sabha MP N D Gupta told reporters at a joint press conference with other party MPs. He said Singh was suspended for the remainder of the Monsoon session under Rule 256 which stipulates that his suspension cannot be extended beyond this session.
“They can suspend up to remainder of the session only, not beyond it. In between, they can terminate the suspension if they feel so,” Tiwari said, citing the rules of procedure and conduct of business.
Addressing the press conference, Singh said he has been “punished twice in one case” and dubbed the extension of his suspension from Rajya Sabha as “weird and shocking”. “The prime minister has lost his mind,” he charged.
Latching on to the suspension of Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury and disqualification of Rahul Gandhi earlier, Singh alleged the Modi government has decided to remove MPs from the Parliament if they speak against it.
“We will expose your government and its black deeds outside Parliament if not inside. Do not live in the illusion that we are going to be silent. Our party will keep raising voice against Manipur violence on the streets and in Parliament as well,” Singh said.
AAP MP Chadha alleged that he was suspended from the Rajya Sabha because he posed questions to the top leaders of the “world’s biggest party, BJP,” in the House.
“Is it my crime that I demanded justice while speaking on the Delhi Services Bill?” he asked.
Chadha alleged that he was suspended on false allegation and said the government's action “unmistakably signal an alarming stance that reeks of being anti-youth and undermines the very foundation of fair representation and democratic values”.
“The suspension of AAP and other INDIA MPs highlights the alarming trend in Parliament, where the BJP blurs the lines between fact and fiction to silence the opposition,” he charged.
“The way the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) orchestrated the suspension of Rahul Gandhi from Parliament indicates its willingness to employ similar tactics to suspend and subsequently expel any AAP MP without hesitation," he added.