Parliament Adjourned over Liberhan Report Leak

The Lok Sabha was on Monday adjourned for the day after a the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) repeatedly disrupted House proceedings over demands that the government immediately table the report of the inquiry conducted by the Liberhan Commission into the Dec 6 1992 demolition of the Babri Masjid.

Shouting anti-government slogans for the alleged leak in a Delhi newspaper — that reportedly said senior BJP leaders, including Atal Bihari Vajpayee and LK Advani had been indicted — MPs gathered near the speaker’s podium and stalled proceedings.

Deputy Speaker Karia Munda adjourned the house for the day amid the vociferous protests.

The house was first adjourned till 1200 hours. When it reconvened, BJP members continued their stir and demanded that the government table the report in the parliament.

The House was then adjourned till 2000 hours. But continuing protests forced the adjournment for the day.

The uproar started as soon as the house met at 1100 hours this morning, the BJP demands, drew support from other opposition parties as well.

Home minister P Chidambaram assured the House that there had been no leakage of the report. He stressed that there was only one copy of the report, which was with the home ministry.

He assured the House that the report would be tabled in this session along with Action Taken Report. The current session of parliament concludes on December 21.

While submitting a notice demanding a debate on the issue to Speaker Meira Kumar , Leader of Opposition LK Advani said that he was surprised to learn about the leakage of the report and reported indictment of Atal Bihari Vajpayee in it, saying that had he been indicted he would have taken it as a challenge.

He stressed that government had no right to delay tabling of the report even for a day.

He said that the demolition of disputed structure was the saddest day of his life but personally, he was proud of his involvement with the Ayodhya movement.

“I want a grand Ram Temple be built there,” Advani said.

Similar, scenes were witnessed in Rajya Sabha too. Over the leakage of the report, Opposition BJP stalled the Question Hour.

Immediately after the House commenced, Chairman Hamid Ansari mentioned that he has received a notice of suspension of Question Hour to discuss the issue of leakage of Liberhan Commission report.

Advisory Committee of the House had already agreed for a short duration discussion on speedy trial of the case, Ansari said that he would allow the Leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley to explain why his notice should be admitted.

Jaitley said that the report was only with the Home Ministry and the Commission and the dignity of the House has been lowered by leakage of the report to the media before it is tabled in the House along with the Action Taken Report (ATR).

“Why can’t the Government place the report (in the Parliament) and have a discussion,” he questioned.

Jaitley, a senior Supreme Court lawyer, further called for an inquiry to identify those behind the leak.

Amar Singh (SP) also condemned the leakage of the report before it being tabled in Parliament.

Minister of State in the PMO Pritviraj Chauhan ‘strongly denied; that the home ministry was behind the leak.

With the home ministry denying involvement, media speculation over the leak soon boiled down to Justice Manmohan Singh Liberhan.

An angry Justice Liberhan, however, said he was not the one to leak the report.

“Go and ask the media where did they get the report from. Go and ask them. What do you mean by this, you are challenging my character? Get Lost. I am not that characterless that I will leak the report before it is tabled in Parliament. Go and ask Opposition what they are saying. Go and ask media. Go and do what you want to,” replied an angry Liberhan when he was asked who leaked the report.

The one-man Liberhan Commission was set up 10 days after the demolition, 17 years and 48 extensions later, the inquiry report was finally submitted to the Home Ministry on June 30 this year.

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