| Home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde arrives at the Parliament in New Delhi on Friday. Picture by Ramakant Kushwaha |
New Delhi, Feb. 22: Angry AGP MPs in the Rajya Sabha were placated today only after the government assured them of a statement by Union home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde on the violence in Assam’s Rabha Hasong Autonomous Council area.
Amid a commotion by the BJP for a discussion on yesterday’s blasts in Hyderabad, AGP MPs Birendra Prasad Baishya and Kumar Deepak Das rushed to the Well of the House.
Addressing Rajya Sabha chairman Hamid Ansari, Baishya said he, too, had given a notice for a discussion on the violence in Rabha Hasong council area during the recently held panchayat elections in Assam. “Twenty-four people have been killed in Assam’s Rabha Hasong area,” he told the Upper House.
As Parliament united to speak against terrorism and paid tributes to those killed in the blasts, apparently little notice was taken of the violence in Assam.
Taken unawares, the BJP hastily made up for the attention deficit. Its deputy leader Ravi Shankar Prasad demanded a statement by Shinde on the Assam violence too.
It was only after parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath said Shinde would make a statement that Baishya returned to his seat. It is not known when Shinde would make a statement.
“No differentiation should be made, whether it is terrorist violence or state-sponsored violence,” Baishya said during the discussion on terror strikes in Hyderabad.
Ten persons were killed in police firing on protesters in Goalpara on February 11. Rabha organisations were protesting the holding of panchayat polls in the council area before the council elections. Since then, the Congress has won the elections in the state and is upbeat.
A statement by Shinde could give AGP MPs an opportunity to vent their anger. During the course of the debate today, CPI’s D. Raja also said Shinde should make a statement on Assam.