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Speaker to withdraw reference of MPs to Privileges panel

Source: PTI
Last updated on: May 05, 2008 14:44 IST
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The crisis over reference of "disorderly conduct" of 32 MPs to the Privileges Committee of the Lok Sabha blew over on Monday with Speaker Somnath Chatterjee deciding to withdraw the move.

"I have decided to reconsider the matter and I shall withdraw the same," Chatterjee announced bringing down the curtain on the six-day-old controversy that followed his unprecedented action.

The withdrawal followed both Leader of the House Pranab Mukherjee and Leader of the Opposition Lal Kishenchand Advani assuring the speaker of full cooperation in smooth running of the House.

Earlier, the crisis over the reference of 'disorderly conduct' of 32 lawmakers to Privileges Committee of the Lok Sabha appeared to have been defused at a meeting of leaders of all parties convened by Chatterjee.

The 32 MPs who disrupted Parliament

The meeting saw Opposition agreeing to undertake orderly behaviour in the House and in turn Chatterjee withdrawing the controversial reference of the MPs, mostly from the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance, to the committee, sources said.

An announcement on the issue is expected when the House reassembles at 1400 hours. "Wait till two," the speaker said, when mediapersons asked him about the outcome of the meeting.

The meeting was called by the speaker who abruptly adjourned the House minutes after it assembled for the day in the shadow of his action of referring the cases to the Privileges Committee.

Chatterjee had taken the unprecedented action on April 30 and it had snowballed into a controversy with opposition NDA earlier in the day deciding to remain silent in Lok Sabha in protest.

He had referred the cases in connection with the opposition uproar on April 24, a day when the BJP-led NDA disrupted the proceedings on the issue of price rise defying the repeated pleas of the speaker.

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