Fourteen Opposition MPs were suspended from Parliament on Thursday for ‘unruly behaviour and misconduct’ as they pressed for a discussion on the security breach that occurred in the Lok Sabha a day earlier. The incident involved two individuals jumping into the Lok Sabha chamber from the visitors’ gallery, opening gas canisters, and creating chaos. Outside Parliament, a man and a woman had also deployed smoke canisters and shouted slogans.
Among the suspended MPs was Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) MP SR Parthiban, who was not present in Parliament on Thursday, leading to his suspension being later revoked. Trinamool Congress MP Derek O’Brien was suspended from the Rajya Sabha, while the rest were suspended from the Lok Sabha.
The security breach prompted demands from the Opposition for Union Home Minister Amit Shah to make a statement about the incident. However, the situation escalated as O’Brien, along with other Opposition members in the Rajya Sabha, was suspended for allegedly violating the chairperson’s directions and disrupting proceedings.
Rajya Sabha chairperson and Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar asked O’Brien to leave the Upper House after he entered the Well, continuously shouting slogans and gesticulating at the Chair. Piyush Goyal, the leader of the House, moved a motion for O’Brien’s suspension, which was adopted with a voice vote. The proceedings were adjourned till 2 pm as Opposition MPs protested O’Brien’s suspension.
In the Lok Sabha, 13 Opposition MPs were suspended for the remainder of the Winter Session. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi moved motions to suspend MPs for displaying “utter disregard to the chair’s directions.” The motions were adopted by voice vote, and the House was adjourned till Friday amidst continued protests from the Opposition.
However, in a twist, SR Parthiban’s suspension was later revoked, with Joshi clarifying that the inclusion of his name in the suspension list was a case of “mistaken identity.”
Opposition MPs expressed disappointment over the suspensions, emphasizing their demand for a statement from the Centre regarding the security breach. Trinamool Congress MP Sukhendu Sekhar Roy highlighted concerns about the weak security in Parliament, stating, “We want the government to mend its ways by tomorrow, issue a statement over the incident, and hold a discussion.”
The government’s decision to suspend Opposition MPs has added fuel to the controversy, with calls for transparency and accountability regarding the security lapse in one of the country’s key democratic institutions.