Eight MPs, including Trinamool’s Derek O’Brien, suspended over chaos in Rajya Sabha on Sunday over passing of Farm bills

Eight Opposition Rajya Sabha MPs including Trinamool Congress MP Derek O’Brien, were suspended for the rest of the session, over chaos in the house on Sunday when the controversial farm bills were passed in the house. There was major opposition and protests when the bills were being passed and several Opposition MPs tore up papers and broke microphones.

Other suspended members include Aam Admi Party’s Sanjay Singh, Congress’ Rajeev Satav and the CPM’s KK Ragesh. Opposition parties have been alleging that the farm bills will give more power to the corporates and farmers will be deprived of fair price.

“I am pained at what happened yesterday. It defies logic. It is a bad day for Rajya Sabha,” said Rajya Sabha chairperson M Venkaiah Naidu.

Prior to this development, Derek O’Brien had uploaded a nine-minute video explaining what took place inside the Rajya Sabha on Sunday, adding that “the Opposition was not going to sit there eating lollipops” when the backbone of democracy and Parliamentary rules and tradition were being broken. He said that voting was not allowed on sending the bills to a committee for scrutiny despite opposition from several members. He alleged, along with other Opposition members, that the ruling BJP forced the bills through a voice vote.

The scenes in the Parliament were unprecedented. According to reports, Aam Admi Party’s Sanjay Singh and Congress member Rajiv Satav climbed in the Secretary General’s table at the centre of the house. Derek O’Brien waved a rulebook in front of the chairperson and some members pulled out microphones. While there were allegations that some members tore up the rulebook, O’Brien said in his video that he had not, adding that it was a clever ploy by the ruling party to manipulate the media through such allegations.

The bills have already been cleared in the Lok Sabha and will thus go to the President for his nod before they become laws. The Opposition has repeatedly tried to block the bills at various stages, asking them to be sent to a select committee for scrutiny and reviews.

“They broke every rule in the Parliament by not allowing the voting. This doesn’t end here. Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee has always fought for farmers and her 26-day hunger strike in 2006 is a case in point. We will not let them bully us like this,” Derek O’Brien said. He added that RSTV was censored during the time of opposition.

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