Don’t undermine our Parliament, ‘slighted’ Opposition tells Centre

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on October 29, 2019

File Photo of Parliament building.   -  Bloomberg

The Opposition has alleged that the Centre has undermined Parliament of the country by inviting a delegation of European Union Parliament to Kashmir and denying permission to MPs from Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha to visit the Valley.

The Opposition parties are all set to raise this issue during the winter session of the House scheduled to begin on November 18.

The Congress termed the Centre’s decision as strange. “MPs from Europe are welcome to go on a guided tour of Jammu & Kashmir while Indian MPs are banned & denied entry. There is something very wrong with that,” said former Congress president and Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi.

Party’s deputy leader in Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma said the Centre rolling out the red carpet to EU MPs is a disrespect to the sovereignty of the Indian Parliament and the violation of the privileges of Indian MPs. “When leaders of Opposition and Members of Parliament went to Srinagar, they were detained and not allowed to meet any individual or community organisations. This stand of the Government is self-defeating and contradicts or consistent position that J&K is India’s internal matter. Is this the new version of Indian nationalism?” Sharma said in a statement. The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) said the move is an affront of the Indian Parliament and its sovereignty, that while Indian MPs and political leadership of national parties are denied the freedom of visit the valley, reportedly some “private visit” by foreign Parliament Members is being allowed.

CPI MP in Rajya Sabha Binoy Viswam, in a letter to the Prime Minister, said that he should be allowed to go to the valley. “It is everybody’s question, why the government disallow any responsible Indian citizen, including Members of Parliament, to enter the territory of Kashmir. Now, the government has spread red carpet for the European Union MPs. In this background, I seek your permission to visit Kashmir and meet with the ordinary people.”

Published on October 29, 2019

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