Uproar in parliament over Walmart, SC/ST quota

Both Houses adjourned until noon

PTI | December 11, 2012



Reports of WalMart engaging lobbying firms to get entry into India and demand for quota in promotion in government jobs rocked Parliament leading to washout of Question Hour in both Houses.

In the Lok Sabha, as soon as Speaker Meira Kumar took up the Question Hour, members of BSP, Left parties and Trinamool Congress trooped into the Well raising slogans demanding inquiry into reports of lobbying by Wal-Mart and status of probe in the coal block allocation.

BJP members were on their feet demanding that the Speaker suspend Question Hour and ask the government to reply on the lobbying issue.

BSP members were in the Well raising slogans claiming that the government was trying to brush under the carpet the alleged scam in allocation of coal block.

The uproar continued even as the Speaker made repeated appeals for allowing the Question Hour to continue. Her assurances of allowing members to raise the issues during Question Hour also failed to cut any ice with the agitating members.

As the din continued, the Speaker adjourned the House till noon.

In the Rajya Sabha, BJP members were up on their feet soon after Chairman Hamid Ansari made an obituary reference to former member G Swaminathan.

Within minutes, BJP members raised the issue of reported lobbying by Wal-Mart and SP members were objecting to the proposed move to provide reservations to SC/ST in promotion in government jobs.

When repeated efforts failed, Ansari said a situation has arisen where "the chair has to watch helplessly" frequent disruption of Question Hour.

He said he proposed to call meeting of the Rules Committee and suggest shifting the Question Hour or dispense with it all together.

Ansari then adjourned the House for 30 minutes. When the House reassembled, similar scenes were witnessed and the Chair adjourned it till noon.

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