While the Opposition continues to paralyse parliament, a senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader has suggested that lawmakers should not get paid since they are not doing any work in the ongoing Monsoon Session.
Union Minister Mahesh Sharma has given a call for "no work, no pay."
If it starts from my side, as an individual, if I’m not working I won’t like to withdraw any pay: Mahesh Sharma, BJP pic.twitter.com/g5AOzXPuQL
— ANI (@ANI_news) August 3, 2015
So far, the BJP has not backed Sharma's remarks.
Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas said that there has been "no work - no pay" suggestion from the government. "Individual members say different things. The Congress Party had also done this propaganda of no work-no pay. Now why are they worried," he said, ANI reported.
The Congress Party backed by the Left parties has demanded resignations of three senior BJP leaders before they allow the parliament to function.
They have demanded the resignations of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj and and Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje for helping cricket magnate Lalit Modi, a fugitive, who is being investigated by Indian agencies for money laundering and financial irregularities connected with the Indian Premier League tournament.
The Opposition also wants Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan to step down over the Vyapam scam.
Ruling out their resignations, the Bharatiya Janata Party has offered to debate all these controversies in parliament. The ruling party has also attempted to weaken the Congress Party's position by isolating it within the Opposition.
The Congress Party has objected to the "no work-no play" suggestion.
"We are working. We have standing committee meetings, I have a select committee meeting on land tomorrow and also a standing committee meeting on health. Therefore, it is wrong to say MPs are not working. MPs are working hard," said Jairam Ramesh, Congress Party lawmaker in the Rajya Sabha, PTI reported.
Congress Party leader Pramod Tiwari asked whether lawmakers would also get paid "overtime" for the extra hours they work in parliament.
Communist Party of India leader D Raja described Sharma's remarks as "irresponsible," ANI reported.
"Parliament is not an enterprise, parliament is not a factory, parliament is not a school. Parliament is not some workplace," he said. "The job of the parliament is to hold the government accountable."
While the Congress Party and the BJP lock horns, the Modi government has critical bills pending in parliament. But an all-party meeting convened today by the ruling party did not yield any compromise.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said on Monday that people are "depressed" over the logjam, and the "mood of the country" is for the parliament to function.
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