New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said on Tuesday that the boycott of Rajya Sabha by the Opposition was unprecedented.
"What Opposition parties have done in Rajya Sabha today led by Congress party is absolutely unprecedented. The Congress and some other parties have tried to manufacture an issue when none existed," he told reporters outside the Parliament building.
He also said the Opposition was running away from a discussion in the Upper House. "There is a huge opportunity for discussing all political and economic issues this week in the parliament. Instead, rules are being violated, every day an effort being made to get the House adjourned, and it is obvious that they don't want an organised discussion," Jaitley said, as per ANI.
The Opposition on Tuesday accused the Rajya Sabha Chair of ignoring the "rules, regulations, procedures and traditions" by not allowing its members to raise some crucial issues and by giving long adjournments.
A combined Opposition on Tuesday boycotted the Rajya Sabha in the post-lunch sitting, complaining that their voice was being muzzled outside as well as inside Parliament.
In the morning, Trinamool Congress MP Derek O'Brien had given a notice under Rule 267 to discuss the alleged overreach of West Bengal Governor KN Tripathi who was trying to bypass the state government in administrative matters.
Naidu rejected the notice and when O'Brien persisted with the matter during the Zero Hour, adjourned the House till 2 pm, skipping even the Question Hour held from 12 noon to 1 pm on Tuesday, IANS reported.
When the House met again at 2 pm, Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad raised the issue of the House being adjourned without conducting the Zero Hour and the Question Hour for the past few days, saying Parliament works according to "rules, regulations, procedures and conventions" and not "according to one's whims".
Azad was joined by other Opposition leaders including Samajwadi Party's Naresh Agarwal, O'Brien and Communist Party of India-Marxist's Tapan Sen in the protest.
As Deputy Chairman PJ Kurien said that Chairman's decisions could not be questioned in the House and the aggrieved members may meet him in his chamber, Azad announced that the Opposition is boycotting the House for the day and the entire Opposition then walked out. Kurien then adjourned the House till 3 pm on Tuesday.
Outside the House, Congress, Samajwadi Party, Trinamool, DMK, CPI-M, CPI and AAP leaders told the media that an attempt was being made to stifle the Opposition's voice for "last one week or so".
(With Agency inputs)