While the Opposition continues to create pandemonium in Parliament over the suspension of 12 MPs from Trinamool Congress, Communist Party of India (CPI) and Congress among others for the ruckus that was created in the monsoon session in August, it is the exclusion of Congress’s Partap Singh Bajwa and Sanjay Singh of Aam Aadmi Party that has grabbed eyeballs.
Bajwa and Singh were seen throwing the rulebook at the Rajya Sabha chairman during the discussion on the three farm laws, which demonstrates unruly behaviour and violation of House rules, and therefore invites action.
As the Chairman released the list of the 12 suspended MPs, many pointed out the reasons behind the exclusion of Bajwa and Singh. Dola Sen of TMC told News18.com, “This was deliberately done with an eye on polls. They too should have been suspended but they were let off because the government didn’t want to antagonise anyone from Punjab.”
In agreement to Sen, Bajwa told News18.com, “I am not sorry. I will and can do it again. I know why they left me out. It’s because they knew if they suspended me and Sanjay Singh of AAP, we both would have become heroes in Punjab, which the BJP doesn’t want. So they let us off.”
Rajya Sabha secretariat, which denies the MPs’ claims, has cited a technical reason behind the exclusion. The incident involving Bajwa and Singh happened on August 10 while the ruckus created by the 12 MPs took place on August 11. As Bajwa threw the rulebook after the proceedings were over, they were not caught on the Rajya Sabha CCTV.
A top source in the Rajya Sabha secretariat said, “Bajwa and Singh’s misconduct happened on August 10. He should have been named the same day or next. Incidents of August 11 were taken note of on the next day, the first day of the winter session. That’s how both escaped the suspension.”
But the exclusion is a missed opportunity for them, especially Bajwa who hopes to contest the upcoming polls in Punjab from Gurdaspur and could have used the suspension to his advantage. His suspension would have helped him become a hero in Punjab as the uproar in Rajya Sabha was over the three contentious farm laws. This would have been a pivot to his campaign in Punjab, which could had scored him a political advantage.
Meanwhile, for AAP, which is also fighting it out for Punjab, a suspension of an MP on farm laws would have added ammo to their campaign. Those who have been suspended may not reap any political benefit immediately but the opposition still wants to use it to make a larger point that the government arm-twisted the institutions to target a few.
Clearly, Bajwa and Singh are feeling left out, as their suspension would have helped them remain in the battle for Punjab.