Telangana issue rocks parliament on session's first day

New Delhi, Aug 5 (IANS) Parliament was continually disrupted and finally adjourned till Tuesday on the first day of the monsoon session, as some members vehemently opposed the creation of Telangana by bifurcating Andhra Pradesh and others demanded carving of Bodoland out of Assam.

Both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha were adjourned several times Monday. But amid disruptions, the food security ordinance was introduced for approval in the lower house.

In the Lok Sabha, Congress and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) MPs from Andhra and Rayalaseema regions of Andhra Pradesh opposed the creation of Telangana and came near the chairman's podium to press for their demand during question hour.

They were carrying placards: "We want justice for Seemandhra area" and "We want united Andhra Pradesh".

TDP member N. Sivaprasad tried to walk up to one of the protestors from the Congress but was stopped by his party colleagues.

Bodoland People's Front (BPF) member S.K. Bwiswmuthiary also joined the protest with a banner stating "Bodoland MPs strongly stand for a separate state of Bodoland".

Speaker Meira Kumar asked the agitating members to go back to their seats and assured them that they would be allowed to speak during zero hour but her request went unheeded, forcing her to adjourn the house till noon.

The house was again adjourned till 2 p.m., then 3 p.m. and finally for the day.

Amid the din, Food Minister K.V. Thomas introduced the food security ordinance, which is expected to be taken up for approval later this week.

The Rajya Sabha was adjourned first for 15 minutes around 11.20 a.m., again till noon, then till 2 p.m. and later for the day.

At noon, two members from the TDP continued to voice their concern over the proposed division of Andhra Pradesh to form Telangana.

C.M. Ramesh and Y.S. Chowdary came close to the podium of the chairman and did not go back to their seats despite repeatedly being told to do so by Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien.

Kurien said the two members were holding the house to ransom. He asked them to give notice and said a discussion will be allowed.

As the members did not relent, the deputy chairman adjourned the house till 2 p.m. and later for the day.

Earlier, when the house resumed its proceedings at noon, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh introduced new members of his team of ministers to the Rajya Sabha.

Chairman Hamid Ansari also adjourned the house twice during question hour earlier.

Members from the TDP and the BPF came near the chairman's podium over their demands. They were also carrying placards.

After lunch break, the upper house took up a discussion on the Uttarakhand tragedy. However, the protest over Telangana continued.

Bharatiya Janata Party leader M. Venkaiah Naidu, meanwhile, blamed the Congress-led government for mishandling the issue.

"It is a serious issue, we need to understand feelings of both sides. The government has mishandled the situation," he said.

The deputy chairman then adjourned the upper house for the day.

Protests were also witnessed outside parliament as MPs from Rayalaseema and coastal Andhra regions demanded that the central government withdraw its decision to bifurcate Andhra Pradesh.

Seemandhra MPs, led by TDP's M. Venugopal Reddy, held placards that said: "We Demand Justice."

MPs from Bodo region of Assam also held protests demanding creation of a new state by bifurcating Assam.

The Rajya Sabha earlier paid tributes to its former members, including Samar Mukherjee and Khurshed Alam Khan.

The house also paid tributes to people killed in Uttarakhand floods and the Congress leaders killed in a Maoist attack in Chhattisgarh in May.

The Lok Sabha also condoled the death of its former members, including Mahendra Karma and V.C. Shukla who were killed in the Maoist attack in Chhattisgarh, and paid homage to Uttarakhand flood victims and the 23 children who died in a mid-day meal tragedy in Bihar.

The two houses also congratulated the Indian cricket team for its victory in the Champions Trophy and players from other fields for their sporting achievements.

Batting mastero Sachin Tendulkar was in the Rajya Sabha when the house lauded the achievement of the Indian cricket team.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh introduced his new ministers - Sis Ram Ola, Oscar Fernandes, Girija Vyas, K.S. Rao, E.M.S. Natchiappan, Manik Rao Gavit, Santosh Chaudhary and J.D. Seelam - to the two houses.

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