Protest in LS: It was heartening to note for people of Telangana that the Telangana Rastra Samiti (TRS) MPs raised their voice for the farmers of the state in the on-going Winter session of Lok Sabha. Though this is appreciated, critics have termed this as a play by TRS to stall the proceedings of the house and not let any kind of debate to happen. It is also being said that TRS MPS were playing to the tunes of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)!
The Lok Sabha barely functioned on the second day of the Winter Session, as a few Opposition leaders demanded a discussion on farmers’ issues, but weren’t allowed the same. In the afternoon, barring a few members of TRS, almost all other Opposition members remained seated, but Speaker Om Birla, saying he can only hold discussions if the House is in order, adjourned it for the day.
Members of TRS were seen in the Well of the House with placards protesting for a law for Minimum Support Price (MSP) for farmers, and other related topics, raising slogans. Raja said that “opportunities to raise your issues will be given to you” asking them to go back to their seats. As the protesting MPs didn’t do so, the House was adjourned till 3 PM.
TRS MPs in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha continued their protest for the second day in a row demanding the Union government to procure paddy from Telangana in rabi and also announce annual paddy procurement target. They also demanded the centre to announce National Farm Produce Policy.
But this protests by TRS MPs caught all parties by surprise and Congress went to the extent of calling the protest as a “hidden agenda” behind keeping the House disturbed when the opposition wanted to join discussions. Retorting to Congress accusations, senior TRS leader and Rajya Sabha member Keshav Rao said that their protest was genuine and no other intention except to help their state farmers was the agenda.
“We are fighting the BJP, we opposed the agri laws. But there is a perception that the TRS is close to the BJP. That perception has to change,” Keshav Rao pointed out. Maybe this was the reason that TRS joined the strategy session called by the Congress leader and attended the meeting. Despite all the efforts to prove itself to be a party that is not close to the BJP, there seems to be an apprehension.
Moreover, TRS joining the meeting called by Congress has turned into a surprise for Telangana Congress party leaders, since both the parties are at logger heads in the state! And after Congress having decided to participate in the discussion and only hold symbolic walkouts, the TRS disrupted the entire day’s proceedings thus creating a suspicion that it was working in tandem with BJP!