The upper house had to suspend the question hour twice when opposition members demanded that Communications and IT Minister A. Raja be dismissed over the alleged irregularities in the allocation of 2G spectrum.
When the house reassembled for the zero hour at 12 noon, the Left parties led by Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) alleged that another central minister, who was not named, was involved in arms deals.
The matter was raised by CPI-M's Moinul Hassan, who referred to a media report of a conversation between a central minister and a Bangladeshi arms dealer. As per reports, Hassan said, the minister gave over Rs 1 lakh to the arms dealer.
"They are trying to destabilize West Bengal," Hassan said, alleging that the arms were being used by the Maoists.
The members of the other opposition parties, the Bharatiya Janata Party, Rashtriya Janata Dal, Samajwadi Party and AIADMK also supported the Left parties' demand and said the government should give its response to the allegation.
"The government must consider looking into the matter and come back with a response," said Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitley.
With the commotion on, PJ Kurien, who was officiating as the chair, said he could not direct the government to give a response immediately.
Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Prithviraj Chavan said that the government takes all issues raised in the zero hour seriously.
"We cannot immediately respond to all issues raised in newspapers. Let them come through the proper rules," he said.
The opposition members were not satisfied with the government's reply and continued to raise their demands vociferously.
The chair adjourned the house first for 10 minutes. But when the house met again and the opposition members were still not in a mood to let the proceedings continue, Kurien adjourned the house for an hour.
New Delhi: The Rajya Sabha was adjourned four times within two hours Monday after opposition members disrupted proceedings over reports of improprieties by two central ministers of the ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA).
First Published: Monday, May 03, 2010, 14:43