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Politics
Land Bill: Govt ran off after ‘threatening and shouting’, says Rahul Gandhi
05-08-2015

NEW DELHI: Taking a swipe at government over its U-turn on land bill, Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said it "ran off" after "threatening" and shouting" in the face of resistance by Congress and vowed that the party will similarly keep up pressure for resignations in Lalit Modi and Vyapam issues.

“On the land issue, Congress stood in front of them. They (government) shouted, made too much noise, threatened and later made a U-turn and ran off,” the Congress vice-president said, a day after BJP members in a parliamentary panel moved amendments to restore provisions of the UPA’s land law.

“Similarly, on the issue of corruption, Vyapam, on the issue of Rajasthan chief minister and Sushma Swaraj, we will not minimize the pressure on them even if they throw us out of Parliament or do not let us enter Parliament," Rahul said.

He made the remarks while agitating with party MPs in Parliament House complex in protest against suspension of its 25 members from Lok Sabha.

The Congress MPs faced action after they did not allow the House to function demanding the resignation of external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje for allegedly helping Lalit Modi and Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan over the Vyapam scam.

Rahul said the Congress will 'gherao' the government on these issues in the entire country. Reacting to the remarks, rural development minister Birender Singh said, “Those who stand at 44 will speak only this language.”

Congress was reduced to its least tally of 44 seats in Lok Sabha in the last general elections.

The barbs from both sides came as the government expressed readiness to accept recommendations of the panel on land bill, which restored provisions of the UPA law, insisting that it was not a climbdown as it was always open to changes on which there is consensus.

All 11 BJP members moved amendments in joint committee of Parliament seeking to bring back key provisions of UPA's land law including on consent clause and social impact assessment by dropping the changes brought by Modi government in December last year and subsequently revalidated by an ordinance thrice.

Meanwhile, the suspension of 25 Congress MPs is expected to affect the proceedings of the parliamentary panel on land bill.

Congress sources said that four of the five MPs in the committee would go for the meeting later today but come out soon after telling the panel that they are boycotting following suspension of their colleague Rajiv Satav.

Satav is among the 25 Congress members suspended by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan on Monday for five days.

The action of the Speaker also prohibits a member to attend any meeting of parliamentary committee, party leaders said.