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Lok Sabha adjourns on Godhra issue

Source: PTI
March 06, 2006 20:47 IST
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Lok Sabha on Monday witnessed uproarious scenes with the treasury benches demanding the dismissal of the Gujarat government in the light of the findings of the U C Banerjee Committee on the Godhra train accident, forcing the chair to adjourn the house 15 minutes ahead of the lunch break.

Miss Sumitra Mahajan, who was in the chair during the zero hour, allowed four members to speak on the report, which found the 2001 fire in the Sabarmati Express was an "accident." She said many others who had sought time to speak on the issue would be recorded as "associates."

This provoked instantaneous protests from the treasury benches who were on their feet demanding a chance to speak on the report whose findings, the members alleged, had exposed the role of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi in perpetuating violence against the minorities in the aftermath of the train incident.

With many of the Opposition members already walking out on the Delhi demolition issue, the Opposition benches were almost vacant during the fracas.

However, the few who were in their seats shouted at the ruling front members. The Bharatiya Janata Party members shouted slogans against the government, which appointed the Banerjee committee 20 months ago.

Godhra Riots: Complete Coverage

This made it difficult for the Chair to go ahead with the next business slated for the day. Miss Mahajan then adjourned the House till 1415 hours.

Raising the issue during zero hour, Samajwadi Party member Ramjilal Suman demanded the removal of Chief Minister Modi in the light of the findings of the Banerjee committee that the fire in the six coaches of Sabarmati Express was due to accident and not due to sabotage.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) member Roupchand Pal demanded that Modi should be subjected to trial for the genocide perpetrated by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and the BJP following the train accident, with the blessing of the Chief Minister, "The notorious role of the government in Gujarat is well known."

'Sabarmati Express fire accidental'

Demanding that the Banerjee Committee report be placed on the table of the House, Mr Madhusoodhan Mistry (Congress) said, "Mr Modi should not be allowed to continue even for a single day as chief minister as he has failed to do his duty."

Mr Chandrakant Khaire (Shiv Sena) said the Banerjee committee was appointed by the UPA government with a specific intention.

"The formation of the Banerjee committee itself is illegal. It was formed to influence minority votes in the Bihar elections." He said there is a vast difference in the findings of the Banerjee committee and the Nanavati Commission.

Mr Khaire alleged that the Banerjee committee report was a "manipulated one" and therefore, should be rejected.
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