Day 6 Budget session: Lok Sabha business washed out

The Lok Sabha could not take up Finance Bill 2018-19, Appropriation Bills and demands for grants with protests forcing a washout of the proceedings for the seventh consecutive day.

With the Opposition parties refusing to return to their seats, the Speaker adjourned the House for almost one hour till 12 noon.

Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu said the government has agreed to a short duration discussion - which does not have a provision for a vote.

In Lok Sabha, the members from the Congress, the Trinamool and some other opposition parties protested against the banking fraud committed by Nirav Modi and his associates, while the TDP and the YSR Congress demonstrated for special status to Andhra Pradesh. The Opposition apprehends that the government may opt for an early adjournment of the budget session after rushing through the bills.

The ruling party also indicated that it will press ahead with the Union Budget-related processes even amid protests. "The party has asked all BJP MPs to be present in the Lower House on March 13, 14 and 15 so that important legislation could be passed", Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar told reporters here. They speak outside on democracy but don't practice it in Parliament. Congress president Rahul Gandhi however did mention that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley was not talking about the PNB scam, alleging involvement of his daughter, in what seems like a tit for tat to the Karti development. "The Congress (men) doesn't have democracy in their genes", he said. We have also issued a three-line whip to all our MPs.

Several of the Opposition parties, including the Congress, met Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to protest what they called the government's "arrogance" in listing these Bills.

Naidu said debates on India's biggest bank fraud and other issues have been permitted under rule 176 that provides for a member to give notice of a Short Duration Discussion without the voting clause.

Members from NDA ally TDP were heard raising slogans like: "We want justice".

Vanessa Coleman