New Delhi, Feb 5 (PTI): The Telangana issue rocked both Houses of Parliament on extended winter session’s first day, prompting Speaker Meira Kumar to adjourn the Lok Sabha for the day, but not before she managed to tell people of the North-East that Parliament is behind them.
The Rajya Sabha also had to be adjourned repeatedly. Both the Houses saw noisy scenes as soon as they met for the day with members from Andhra Pradesh -- from the Telangana as well as Seemandhra regions -- cutting across party lines to storm the Well. Those protesting included members from ruling Congress.
While Seemandhra members carried placards supporting a united Andhra Pradesh, Telangana members shouted slogans demanding early creation of the separate state.
The government has announced that it will take up the Bill to carve out a separate Telangana state from Andhra Pradesh in the current session, which will conclude on February 21.
Andhra Pradesh has remained sharply divided on regional lines on the Telangana issue and the Bill is coming to Parliament after being rejected by the Andhra Pradesh Assembly.
Meanwhile, Shiromani Akali Dal members were on their feet, targeting Congress on the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in the wake of renewed controversy on the issue following a television interview by Rahul Gandhi.
Carrying placards and shouting slogans, they wanted day-to-day trial of pending cases against Congress leaders Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler.
Bahujan Samaj Party members were also in the Well but it was not immediately clear what issue they were raising.
Speaker Meira Kumar repeatedly appealed to members to maintain calm and allow smooth conduct of the House, reminding them that it was the last session of the 15th Lok Sabha.
As her pleas went unheeded, she adjourned the House, first till noon and later for the day.
Before the adjournment, the Lok Sabha condemned the attacks and harassment of people from the North-east in various parts of the country in the wake of the killing of a boy from Arunachal Pradesh in Delhi, and said a message should go out that they should be protected.
“The entire House condemns the death of young boy (Nido Taniam from Arunachal Pradesh). A clear message should go to the entire country that Parliament wants that all the people and children from the Northeast are protected,” Speaker Meira Kumar said after members raised the issue.
Raising the matter during Zero Hour, Leader of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj referred to the death of Taniam and the harassment of two women in Delhi in the recent past and said people across the country should be sensitised about their counterparts from the Northeastern states.
“If Ganga, Yamuna is part of India, so is Brahmaputra,” she said. Swaraj, who spoke amidst continued din over Telangana, said after the riots in Kokrajhar in Assam last year, people from the Northeast had to return home from various parts of the country because of harassment.
“Parliament had then issued an appeal to them that India is yours, don't go. We will provide you protection,” she said.
Swaraj also took a dig at Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi, without naming them, saying representatives of the state government and the Centre, which are responsible for providing protection to people, joined the students from the region at their sit-in here.
She said every BJP member would protect people of the Northeast residing in their neighbourhood.