There was a rare unity between Congress and TMC leaders as they complained of Opposition members losing chairs of parliamentary panels, while citing conventions and precedents before Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla.
When Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury alleged that the Opposition’s rights were being muzzled and that the TMC has not been given any post, Birla reminded him of the convention that the chair’s decisions are not questioned in the House. TMC leader Sudip Bandyopadhyay tried to back Chowdhury, saying, “Trinamool Congress has not been given any chairmanship in spite of being the second largest party; but we are not begging for any chairmanship from this (ruling) party.”
Special mention: Along with congratulations and wishes he received on his first day as Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar was reminded of his previous tenure as the West Bengal Governor when he had run-ins with the CM.
CPI(M) member John Brittas raised the issue of the “role of governors and Centre-state relations” in Special Mentions after urging the Chairman not to object to what he was going to say. Quoting B R Ambedkar, the MP said the role of the Governor was “ornamental”. Brittas said governors sitting on Bills passed by an Assembly or misusing the discretionary powers was the new normal. Several MPs could be heard saying they “associate” with what Brittas said, bringing a smile on Dhankhar’s face.
Cold comfort: The Delhi civic body election results came as a “relief” for many in the BJP as the party could cross the 100-seat mark. But the party’s strategists did not seem to be happy as the BJP now doesn’t have control in any of the four metros — Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Delhi — despite urban voters being the main strength of the party.
Parliament corridors and the BJP office in Parliament House were abuzz with party MPs talking about the BJP’s diminishing influence over the metro voters. But they comforted themselves by saying that Lok Sabha and Assembly election results will pan out differently.