Azam Khan Remark Against BJP MP Sparks Uproar In Parliament
Samajwadi Party MP Azam Khan speaks in the Lok Sabha during the ongoing Budget Session of Parliament. (LSTV/PTI Photo) 

Azam Khan Remark Against BJP MP Sparks Uproar In Parliament

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Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan on Thursday courted fresh controversy when he made an objectionable remark against Bharatiya Janata Party’s Member of Parliament Rama Devi who was in the Chair in the Lok Sabha.

The National Commission For Women and the Delhi Commission For Women condemned Khan’s comment, dubbing it “lecherous and disgraceful”.

Participating in the debate on the triple talaq bill, Khan referred to the intervention of Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and read out a couplet “... tu idhar-udhar ki baat na kar ...” (do not divert from the topic).

At this, Rama Devi, who was presiding over the proceedings, asked Khan not to “look here and there” and address the Chair.

To this, the SP member made a remark at the Chair, triggering acrimonious scenes. Rama Devi later directed that Khan’s remark be removed from the records. She, however, said she is like Khan’s younger sister.

Khan's remark infuriated union ministers Ravi Shankar Prasad and Arjun Ram Meghwal as they urged the Chair to ask him to apologise.

When Khan was asked to do so by Rama Devi, he said he meant no disrespect to her as she was like his “dear sister”.

During the Lok Sabha poll campaign, Khan, who is known to making controversial statements, had made objectionable remarks against actor-turned-politician Jaya Prada who contested on a BJP ticket. The police lodged an FIR against Khan for insulting the modesty of a woman.

SP chief Akhilesh Yadav rose to defend Khan. Meanwhile, Speaker Om Birla took over the proceedings.

Yadav said there was no intention to malign the Chair, sparking protests by the BJP members. He then made a remark on the conduct of BJP members.

The Speaker took objection to the remark reminding Yadav that he had been a chief minister and should be mindful of words which were unparliamentary. He also asked the SP chief, a former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, to apologise.

Yadav said the word he used was first used by the treasury benches. The Speaker asked him to point out the member who used the term and asked the SP leader to apologise.

Khan said he has spent a long time in politics and if he has used any unparliamentary language, he is ready to resign “immediately”.

As the Speaker listened to both sides, Danish Ali (BSP) walked out of the House, saying he was not allowed to speak. Khan joined him in the walkout, saying he cannot speak when he was being insulted.

Later, members of the SP and BSP walked out.

Saugata Roy from the Trinamool Congress said what happened in Parliament now was not good.

Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha, said it is not good if if members of the minority community leave the House when the triple talaq bill is being discussed.

Birla said maintaining the dignity of the House is the responsibility of all members.

“A party may have more numbers, but the House runs on consensus ... members want remarks to be expunged. But we should not make statements which have to be expunged. When people hear such statements, they form an opinion about MPs,” he said.

Earlier, participating in the debate, Danish Ali said something about BJP members not giving rights to women. But his remarks were expunged by Rama Devi.

BJP MPs protested against Ali's remark, saying he was making “personal allegations”.

National Commission For Women chairperson Rekha Sharma said Khan should be disqualified from Parliament.

Delhi Commission For Women chief Swati Maliwal also hit out at the former Uttar Pradesh minister and said he should be sent to jail for his "lecherous comment".

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