Lok Sabha adjourned again over women’s bill protests

New Delhi, March 9 (IANS) Noisy protests against quotas for women in legislative bodies again forced adjournments of the Lok Sabha Tuesday with MPs of the Janata Dal-United (JD-U), Samajwadi Party (SP) and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) continuing their protests and slogan shouting.

The Women’s Reservation Bill led to three disruptions of the lower house after similar protests forced four adjournments Monday.

When her repeated pleas fell on deaf ears, Speaker Meira Kumar adjourned the house till 4 p.m. after members reassembled at 2 p.m.

Two women MPs of the SP, Usha Verma and Sushila Saroj, joined about 30 others in the noisy protests against the government’s move to provide 33 percent reservation for women in all legislatures.

The legislation was moved for consideration in the Rajya Sabha Monday amid unruly scenes as a dozen members opposing it tore up the document and hurled them at Chairman Hamid Ansari. Protests against the bill also stalled the proceedings Tuesday in the Rajya Sabha, which also saw three adjournments.

Those opposed to the bill shouted slogans demanding that Muslim Dalits and Other Backward Classes be given a quota in the seats to be kept exclusively for women.

‘Musalmanon ki haq maari, nahin chalegi, nahin chalegi (We won’t allow Muslim rights to be snatched)’, ‘Utho Dalit, pichhde Musalman, mil kar badlo Hindustan’ (Wake up! Dalits, backwards and Muslims, Let’s together change India), they shouted.

The speaker first allowed the house proceedings to carry on amid noisy scenes. However, when the protests intensified and the MPs trooped near her podium, she adjourned the house briefly for 10 minutes at 11.25 a.m.

The protests were repeated when the house resumed at 11.35 a.m. This time, the speaker adjourned the proceedings till noon.

Soon after the house assembled at 12, JD-U leader Sharad Yadav, SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and RJD president Lalu Prasad and their MPs again walked up to the speaker’s podium shouting slogans.

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