Trinamool MPs being singled out for suspension, says Dola Sen

Suspending MPs to push through bills is a pattern with the NDA govt., says Trinamool Congress MP from Rajya Sabha

TMC MP Dola Sen, one of the loudest protestors in Rajya Sabha and among the seven lawmakers suspended from the current monsoon session, says her party MPS are being singled out though members from other parties were also shouting slogans and had torn papers.

So far seven TMC MPs have been suspended in the monsoon session of Parliament. Do you believe that TMC is being singled out for disciplinary action?

It is clear that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scared of our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. It is not as if TMC MPs were standing alone in the well. MPs from Congress, Left parties, DMK, and Aam Aadmi Party were also in the well, but no one else was suspended except for us. In fact, Congress and AAP MPs tore papers too, but no action was taken against them. On Wednesday when six of us were suspended, like the other days, most of the Opposition members were holding posters. But TMC was singled out. We don’t care; it is a matter of pride for us.

Hours after your suspension on Wednesday, it was reported that you and your colleagues tried to storm into the Rajya Sabha chamber injuring a female security officer. What exactly transpired?

It is unfortunate that the Leader of the House Piyush Goyal stood on the floor of the Parliament and lied. Mr Goyal claimed that the Rajya Sabha chamber was closed down for sanitation, which is absolutely incorrect. The MPs were still walking in and out of the chamber. Out of the six TMC MPs who were suspended four of us are ladies. We were carrying bags which we had left behind on our seats. After we were informed about our suspension, we stood outside the door of the Rajya Sabha chamber and continued with our protest. At 3:30 p.m., the House adjourned for the day which means our suspension for the day too ended. When we returned to the chamber to pick our bags, a male Parliamentary security official stopped us from entering. Why is Mr. Goyal lying to cover up a mistake committed by a marshal?

But in your protest on Pegasus, aren’t other important issues like the high fuel prices also getting washed out?

We have clearly said that three issues need to be discussed threadbare — Pegasus cyber attack, repeal of the three farm bills and frequent fuel price hike. Now, with due respect, IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw is not the policy maker for this government. It is the Prime Minister and Home Minister who drive the policy, so let them come and answer our questions. We are shouting slogans demanding a discussion, not to cause disruption.

In the din, we see every day, the government is managing to clear crucial bills without recording any objection from the Opposition. Aren’t you, in a way, helping the government?

This is a pattern with the government. In September 2020, too, I was suspended similarly, when the government bulldozed through the three farm laws. They denied us a division on the bills. They refused to hear our objections on the bills. The BJP is shameless, they passed 30 bills and then they themselves curtailed the session. Once again they are doing the same. This time around too on an average only seven minutes are spent on each bill.

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