PM must make statement on Manipur, INDIA parties want debate under Rule 267 in Rajya Sabha: Cong

A protester holds a placard during a protest against the ongoing ethnic violence in Manipur state, in New Delhi, Friday, July 21, 2023. Photo: PTI

New Delhi: Parties belonging to the opposition bloc INDIA want a discussion on Manipur under Rule 267 in the Rajya Sabha, which means that all other business of the House gets suspended till the debate is over, the Congress said on Monday and accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of "running away" from giving a statement on the violence in the state.

Both Houses of Parliament have been experiencing repeated disruptions since the start of the Monsoon session on July 20. The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day on Monday as the opposition insisted on discussing the Manipur issue under Rule 267 of the House.

In a tweet, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said, "The INDIA parties stuck to their position in the Rajya Sabha this afternoon. PM must make a statement in the House on what has happened in Manipur over the past 90 days on which he has maintained an eloquent silence. Thereafter, there should be a debate and discussion."

The INDIA parties want this under Rule 267, which means given the seriousness of the issue being raised all other business of the House gets suspended till the debate is over, he said.

"It is not the INDIA parties that are running away from a debate on Manipur. It is actually the PM who is running away from giving a statement in the Rajya Sabha," Ramesh said.

Earlier, in another tweet, Ramesh said "extraordinary happenings" took place in the Rajya Sabha in the afternoon with Leader of the Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge being given permission to speak by the Chair but as he tried to speak, all BJP MPs were instigated to prevent him from speaking.

He tries to but his voice is drowned out in the din created by the Treasury benches. The House gets adjourned!" Ramesh said.

He said INDIA parties are demanding suspension of all business in the Rajya Sabha, a statement by the PM on Manipur, followed by a discussion thereafter.

The Modi government has been resisting this and trying to give the impression that it is ready for a debate while saying nothing on a statement by the PM, the Congress general secretary said

"When the BJP was in Opposition it often didn't allow the House to function till the then PM Dr. Manmohan Singh made a statement, which he usually did," he said.

Ramesh, along with party chief Kharge, also attended an all-party meeting chaired by Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar to ensure smooth conduct of business in the Upper House.

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