RS adjourned till 2 pm amid Opposition uproar over farm laws

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New Delhi, Mar 10 (PTI) Rajya Sabha proceedings were adjourned till 2 pm on Wednesday, for the second time in the pre-lunch period, after the Congress and other opposition party members created an uproar demanding a discussion on three new farm laws of the Centre.

The proceedings were first adjourned till 12 noon and then again till 2 pm after the opposition members trooped into the Well of the House raising slogans.

The pleas by Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu and then by Deputy Chairman Harivansh went unheeded as the opposition members continued to create a ruckus in the House.

After the laying of papers on the table, Leader of Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge said notices have been given under Rule 267 for the suspension of the listed business for the day to discuss the three farm laws and issues related to farmers.

He said four young leaders have given the notices for a discussion on the three laws passed in the House, against which farmers are protesting throughout the country.

As the opposition members raised slogans demanding withdrawal of the three farm laws, the chairman 'disallowed' the notices, saying the issue was discussed in the first leg of the ongoing Budget Session.

He asked the agitating members to return to their seats and said the farmers' issue could be discussed during the debate on appropriation bills and finance bills.

'I request you to allow under Rule 267 to discuss this issue...till then it will not be fair...without taking notice of this, we cannot proceed. So we request that you suspend all the rules and take it,' Kharge said.

Naidu said he has gone through the notices given by Deepinder Hooda, Rajeev Satav, Pratap Singh Bajwa (all three from the Congress), Manoj Kumar Jha (RJD) and Tiruchi Siva (DMK) about the need to discuss the farmers' issue and to suspend all other business of the House.

Subsequently, he said, Ashok Siddharth (BSP) has given a notice on the issue of fuel price rise that 'we have already disposed of yesterday'.

'About these notices, I would like to say that this House, in this session itself, in the first part, has discussed farmers' issues and the farmers' agitation...I have disallowed the notice,' the chairman said.

He asked the members to have a discussion on farmers as part of the discussion on the Ministries of Agriculture, Rural Development and Food Processing, for which around two-three hours are given.

'If you are really interested in discussion, please follow the discussion route and if you only want disruption, then I leave it to you,' Naidu said amid slogan-shouting by the opposition members demanding a repeal of the 'black' laws.

'There is a procedure to take back the laws, which you know. If you have the numbers, you can prevail upon the government. If the numbers are not there and then you want to disrupt the House, it is not fair,' the chairman said, urging the members to return to their seats.

'You are not doing any justice to the farmers' cause,' he observed.

Naidu said 18 Zero Hour matters have been admitted and the members are eager to raise the issues.

'If you do not want a discussion, want to continue (with the) disruption, I leave it to you,' the chairman said and adjourned the House till 12 noon.

When the House met at 12 noon, the deputy chairman called for the Question Hour to be taken up, but the opposition members continued with their protest in the Well.

'The chairman has clarified his position on Rule 267 and it cannot be reopened,' the deputy chairman said, urging the members to take their seats.

As the Chair proceeded with the Question Hour, the protesting members raised their pitch and started sloganeering against the government demanding a repeal of the farm laws.

Labour Minister Santosh Gangwar tried to give his reply to a supplementary question raised by M Thambidurai of the AIADMK, but he could not be heard in the din.

With the opposition protests continuing, the deputy chairman adjourned the House till 2 pm.

This is the third day of the second part of the Budget Session when the House proceedings had to be adjourned due to an opposition uproar. The Rajya Sabha has not transacted any business since Monday. PTI NKD SKC RC