AAP MP Sanjay Singh suspended from Rajya Sabha


Rajya Sabha deputy chairman Harivansh said Sanjay Singh’s action was in utter disregard of rules and the authority of the Chair. Soon thereafter, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs V Muraleedharan moved a motion to suspend Singh from the House for the remainder of the week. The motion was adopted by voice vote, even as opposition members continued to raise uproar in the well of the house.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh

The number of Opposition members suspended from the Rajya Sabha reached 20 on Wednesday with AAP member Sanjay Singh joining the list. The suspensions have led to a deadlock with Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu maintaining the decision will be revoked only if the suspended members express regret while the opposition has decided to continue its protest.

Sanjay Singh was suspended for tearing and throwing papers at the Chair on Tuesday. He was also shouting slogans and displaying a placard in the Well of the House. When the House met at 12PM for Question Hour, Deputy Chairperson Harivansh announced that Singh had engaged in ‘unruly behaviour”. A motion was moved by Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs V Murleedharan for suspending Singh for the remainder of the week. It was adopted by a voice vote.

However, Singh refused to leave the House and continued protesting on the hooch tragedy in Gujarat in which more than 40 people have died. The House was adjourned for 15 minutes as AAP members protested in the Well.

Vice Chairman Bhubaneswar Kalita, who was in the Chair when the House met at 2 PM, named Sanjay Singh and asked him to leave the House but he continued to raise slogans and display a placard, along with other AAP members.

“Please withdraw yourself from the House. You have no business to be here… What Sanjay Singh has done is deplorable,” Kalita said. Other Opposition parties- TMC, DMK, Left parties- protested from their seats. Kalita adjourned the House for the day.

With Singh’s suspension, the number of suspended Opposition leaders has gone up to 20. A total of 19 members- TMC (7), DMK (6), TRS (3), CPI-M (2) and CPI (1)- were suspended on Tuesday. Four members, all Congress, have been suspended in Lok Sabha for the rest of the monsoon session.

Congress members were not present in the second half as the party has taken to the streets to protest against the summoning of interim party chief Sonia Gandhi by ED.

The deadlock in the Upper House is not likely to be resolved this week though back channel efforts have begun. Ten leaders from the Opposition- led by Leader of the Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge- met the Chairman and requested that the suspension be revoked unconditionally.

( Originally published on Jul 27, 2022 )

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