New Delhi: Trinamool Congress leader Sudip Bandopadhyay`s insistence to have his way in the Lok Sabha did not go down well with Speaker Sumitra Mahajan on Thursday.
Bandopadhyay raised the issue of plight of workers of closed tea gardens in West Bengal despite suggestions from the Speaker that he could do so in the evening when the Zero Hour is taken up.
She proceeded to take up the debate on the Finance Bill and even called out Finance Minister Arun Jaitley but Bandopadhyay continued to press for raising the issue about which he said he had written to her.
As the Speaker resisted the attempt, Bandopadhyay was heard saying "if you don`t allow, you will compel us to become restless." He was supported by his party colleagues who urged Mahajan to give him a chance.
After Bandopadhyay finished his submission in which he also quoted a letter written by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to the Commerce Minister on the issue, the Speaker said she had not received any notice by him seeking permission to raise the issue.
"This should not be done. You have not given anything in writing," a visibly annoyed Mahajan said, adding she was allowing him only as a special case.
Bandopadhyay said five tea gardens in Deklapara, Bundapani, Red Bank, Surendranagar and Raipur, all in North Bengal, were closed for several months and about 5,000 workers and their families were finding it difficult to have two meals a day.
Maintaining that the state government was already supplying them subsidised foodgrains, he demanded that the Centre, in concert with the state government, should implement a rehabilitation package for the people affected by the closure of these tea gardens.
He said there had been no response from the Commerce Ministry to Chief Minister`s letter on the issue.