Distribution of Literature, Placards Prohibited In Parliament

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New Delhi: Ahead of the Monsoon session of the Parliament an advisory has been sent to the members to refrain from distribution of any pamphlets, leaflets or placards in the House.

The advisory issued by the Lok Sabha Secretariat reads, “As per established convention, no literature, questionnaire, pamphlets, Press notes, leaflets or any matter printed or otherwise should be distributed without the prior permission of Hon’ble Speaker within the precincts of the House. Placards are also strictly prohibited inside the Parliament House Complex.”

This advisory comes in at a time when Opposition parties created a huge furore over the advisory on permission not being given to hold demonstrations and dharnas within the parliament complex.

“Members cannot use the precincts of the House for any demonstration, dharna strike, fast, or for the purpose of performing any religious ceremony,” an advisory to MPs read.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • There have been several instances in the past when members of the Opposition had been seen holding placards from their seats also in the well and that had constantly drawn the ire of the ‘Chairs’ in both the Houses.
  • Ugly scenes have been witnessed in the Rajya Sabha in the recent few sessions when members of Parliament have been holding on to placards throughout the proceedings and on occasions tearing the placards and pamphlets and throwing them at the Chair.
  • The Opposition parties have created a huge ruckus over the statement that was put through a Parliamentary Bulletin on Thursday evening that states that no dharna would be allowed in Parliament.
  • “Members cannot use the precincts of the House for any demonstration, dharna strike, fast, or for the purpose of performing any religious ceremony. Kind cooperation of members is solicited,” the circular stated.
  • Several members of Parliament, including Congress Rajya Sabha MP Jairam Ramesh, took to Twitter to criticize this move.
  • However, several documents have been put out in the public domain to show that this is not the first time such a circular has been brought out.
  • “Many such circulars that were issued during the UPA regime are in the public domain. Of those one was brought out on December 2, 2013, and the second one on February 3, 2014,” said sources.
  • This is yet another baseless issue brought up by the Opposition, sources in the government pointed out and said that people like Jairam Ramesh should remember that when such circulars were brought out in the past he was part of the government as a Minister.
  • BJP IT cell head Amit Malviya shared a circular for 2013 and 2014 on Twitter and said, “Who was in office in 2013 and 2014? UPA. Who issued circulars that there would be no dharnas in the Parliament? UPA. We know Congress has a marginalised presence in Parliament but the least they can do is remember their own track record while in office. Or has it been too long?”
  • Sources in the Rajya Sabha pointed out that “these are the circulars that are regularly brought out from time to time to keep members abreast of their conduct in the House and in Parliament complex. Since the whole country is watching what is happening in the Parliament and that every political party should avoid any politics over such matters.”
  • This comes following shortly after an uproar by the Opposition parties over the Lok Sabha Secretariat releasing a booklet with a list of the words and expressions that will be considered unparliamentary in both Houses of Parliament, ahead of the Monsoon Session beginning July 18.Some such words are ‘corruption’, ‘corrupt’, ‘Jumlajeevi’, ‘tanashah’, ‘Dictator’, ‘black’ and ‘Khalistani’ among others.
  • The Opposition raised their concern, following which on Thursday, Lok Sabha Speaker held a press briefing calling such reports, regular practice since 1954.

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