New Delhi: Opposition parties led by Congress on Friday met President Pranab Mukherjee to apprise him of problems caused by the Centre's demonetisation move to the common man, and also informed him about "not being" allowed to speak in Parliament.
Addressing a press briefing outside the Rashtrapati Bhawan, senior Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge said, ''The govt failed completely in running the proceedings in the Parliament. Due to the government's attitude, the House couldn't function.''
''Leaders from Opposition parties also gave a memorandum to President. We told President that we wanted a discussion on demonetisation in Parliament and on problems faced by farmers, small traders and the common man,'' Kharge added.
We sincerely wanted to discuss notes ban in Parliament and even gave several notices but government wasn’t interested in it, Kharge added.
— President of India (@RashtrapatiBhvn) December 16, 2016
Farmers do not have money for seeds, small traders are facing cash crunch. We apprised the President of the woes of the common man triggered by the demonetisation move, JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav said on his turn.
We will continue to oppose the government's anti-people policies and initiatives in the days to come too, warned TMC's Sudip Bandyopadhyaya.
Besides Kharge, prominent among those who met the President were – Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Sharad Yadav of Janata Dal United, Rahul Gandhi, Sudip Bandyopadhyay of TMC.
However, the Samajwadi Party, Mayawati-led BSP and the Left parties skipped the meeting.
At a meeting of Opposition held in the chamber of Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad yesterday, representatives of various parties decided to appraise the President about the problems faced by the common man since the announcement of demonetisation.
Opposition leaders had said that they will meet the President on Friday, and before that they will assemble near the Gandhi statue in Parliament.
Leaders of various parties said the entire Opposition will meet the President to "complain" against the ruling party for "not allowing them" to speak in Parliament.
The leaders said they were elected representatives of the country and had every right to speak in Parliament and it was "unconstitutional" not to allow them to speak in both Houses.
Sources said it was also decided in the meeting to raise the plight of farmers and common people in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha and demand a loan waiver for farmers.
All parties decided that while Azad will raise the issue in Rajya Sabha, Leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge would raise the issue in Lok Sabha.
Azad also gave an adjournment notice under Rule 267 for allowing a discussion on hardships faced by farmers due to notes ban.
Opposition leaders have been meeting every morning to decide on a united strategy in Parliament during the Winter Session, which has been a virtual washout.
Representatives of Congress, Trinamool Congress, BSP, SP, JD(U), CPI, CPI(M), NCP, DMK and All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) were present in yesterday's meeting.