‘Don’t turn Parliament into fish market’: Minister slams O’Brien for culinary dig

Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, also Deputy Leader of the Rajya Sabha, asked O'Brien to have "fish curry" if he's allergic to "papri chaat" and accused him of conspiring to malign Parliament's dignity

In 2019, TMC MP Derek O’Brien had also brought in a food analogy to describe the government’s rushed manner in passing bills. That time he had asked, "Are we delivering pizzas...?"

Trinamool MP Derek O’Brien’s culinary jibe at the government’s hurried passage of bills has provoked the Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi to also fish out a rebuttal related to food.

Media reports said Naqvi, who is also Deputy Leader of the Rajya Sabha, hit out at O’Brien for criticising the government for rushing bills through Parliament ‘under seven minutes per bill’ which seemed akin to ‘making papri chaat’. Naqvi retorted, he “can have fish curry, if he’s allergic to papri chaat. But don’t turn Parliament into a fish market”, reported NTDV.

He lambasted O’Brien for colluding with others to “malign Parliament’s dignity”. “Unfortunately, the manner in which work is being done with conspiracy to malign Parliament’s dignity, has never been seen before,” he said, added the NDTV report quoting news agency ANI on August 4.

Also read: Persistent logjam in Parliament an insult, says PM as stalemate continues

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On August 2, Derek O’Brien had posted a sarcastic tweet on the rushed manner in which the government was passing bills through Parliament. He pointed out that in the first 10 days, Modi-Shah combine had rushed through and passed 12 bills at an average time of “UNDER SEVEN MINUTES” per bill. He also carried a chart on the minutes taken so far to pass the different bills in the Parliament.

He ended his tweet with a tongue-in-cheek dig: Passing legislation or making papri chaat?

O’Brien had earlier in 2019 also brought in a food analogy to describe the government’s rushed manner in passing bills. That time he had asked, “Are we delivering pizzas…?”

The monsoon session of the Parliament has turned into a flop session, as the deadlock between the Opposition parties and the government continues without either side ready to back down. No business is being conducted at all as the Opposition is demanding a Supreme Court-monitored probe into the Pegasus scandal, and a discussion in Parliament with both the Prime Minister and Home Minister Amit Shah present.

On its part, the government’s obdurate stand is that surveillance of the alleged kind suggested by the Opposition parties is impossible given existing checks and balances in India’s legal framework. They pointed out that the IT Minister Ashwin Vaishnaw has also made a statement on the matter in Parliament and the entire issue is closed.

Also read: Parliament offensive: Rahul calls Oppn meet, leads ‘cycle protest’

The Opposition parties led by Congress MP Rahul Gandhi however are unrelenting and sticking to their stand for a discussion on the Pegasus scandal. The parties that are on the Congress side include Trinamool, the Shiv Sena, the NCP and the DMK and they all met at a breakfast meeting to work out a strategy for the rest of the monsoon session.

The Congress blames the government for the stalemate in the Parliament. In turn, Prime Minister Modi has pointed a finger at the Congress for being responsible for not willing to iron out the issues and let the Parliament function. In fact, he made a reference to the derogatory comments made by a senior MP regarding the passage of bills – the papri chaat.

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