MPs in the Lok Sabha sought the government’s attention on a range of issues — from drivers using ear phones on highways to wrestler Narsingh Yadav failing his drug test ahead of the Rio Olympics, from the alleged exodus of Hindus from districts in Uttar Pradesh to the alleged harassment of Muslims in Assam.
The entire House joined Congress MP Ranjeet Ranjan when she demanded a CBI probe into the Narsingh Yadav issue. Referring to the allegations that the brother of another international player had a role in spiking Yadav’s food, the MP said, “Whether he (Yadav) took the drug on his own or he has been fixed, we do not know. There should be a CBI inquiry and the guilty must be given the most stringent punishment. It is a heinous crime.” She pointed out that this “kind of setback at the last minute,” after long months of practice and training, could push the player into depression.
When the matter came up during Question Hour, Sports Minister Vijay Goel said the panel that is investigating the doping controversy would be out with its report in the next two days and that until then, Yadav will remain under provisional suspension. He said the government would consider a suggestion made by members for keeping a check on anabolic steroids, which are freely available in the market.
Raising the issue of a Union minister allegedly threatening a Dalit in Pilibhit in Uttar Pradesh, asking him to withdraw a court case, Congress’ Rajiv Satav said, “These reports are disturbing. But neither the minister concerned nor the government has so far responded to the matter despite several reports in the last week.”
Drawing the House’s attention into an incident in which eight children were killed in a bus accident at a railway crossing, Prahlad Singh Patel, BJP MP from Damoh, Madhya Pradesh, said the tragedy occurred as the driver had his ear phones plugged into his cellphone. “All across the world, majority of the accidents occur due to smartphones,” he said. He sought a ban on drivers using ear phones while driving on highways.
Patel’s party colleague from Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath, sought the government’s intervention to arrest the “mass exodus of people of the majority community” because of the alleged collapse of law and order in the state. According to the Gorakhpur MP, the situation in UP is “similar to what the Kashmir Valley witnessed in the late 80s”. He claimed that Hindu families were moving out of Muzaffarnagar, Shamli, Kairana and Aligarh. He sought the Centre’s intervention to urge the SP government to take “stern action” against elements responsible for the alleged exodus, saying the local administration was “inactive”.
AIDUF’s Sirajuddin Ajmal, however, complained about the alleged harassment of the Muslim community in Assam. “Our party, AIDUF, demands that no Bangladeshi should stay in Assam. But genuine citizens should not be harassed,” he said. Ajmal said several families had lost their documents in “devastating floods”. “Ïn such a situation, people would rush to save their children and other family members rather than saving documents. So these people are without their documents now. But officers do not give them copies so these genuine citizens of Assam are labelled as foreigners,” he said.
M B Rajesh, CPM MP from Palakkad, wanted the government to suspend the move to merge State Bank of Travancore (SBT) with SBI. He said the state Assembly had passed a unanimous resolution against the move. “It has 850 branches across the state, its credit deposit ratio is 67 per cent, it has given 60 per cent of the total education loans. From this, it is clear that SBT caters to marginal farmers, small businesses and students. The decision to merge will have serious implications on the state’s economy,” Rajesh said.