MPs should avoid making statements that hurt religious feelings: Om Birla

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Stressing that all religions are equal before the Constitution, Speaker of the Lok Sabha Om Birla Sunday said MPs should avoid provocative statements about any religion and always uphold the dignity and propriety of Parliament.

Birla, who turns three years in office on Sunday, thanked the leaders of all political parties for their contribution to his successful promotion and said it was a great achievement for him that the average performance of the Chamber over this period exceeded 100 percent.

According to him, the House functioned for almost 1,000 hours at eight meetings of the 17th Lok Sabha.

Calling the discussions and debates “decorations of democracy,” Birla told PTI that parliamentarians should avoid unnecessary aggression and yelling when speaking in parliament.

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“Discussion, debate are the most important parts of parliamentary democracy. Sarcasm, making fun of each other is also acceptable during the debate. But MPs in parliament should avoid unnecessary aggression, shouting and interrupting each other,” Birla said.

He also said Parliament should not be used as a platform for unfounded accusations and counter-claims from political leaders.

On the issue of the heated debate among politicians these days about religions, Birla suggested that MPs refrain from making provocative statements against any religion, as all religions are equal before the Constitution. “When speaking on religious topics, deputies should remember that their statements do not hurt the feelings and feelings of representatives of any other religion. We should all diligently follow these practices and conventions. Our Constitution gives everyone the right to practice their religion,” Birla said.

Claiming that Parliament operates in accordance with the Constitution, Birla said: “There should be no provocative statements against any religion in Parliament. His dignity and propriety must be upheld at all times.” asked about facebook whistleblower Sophie Zhang, who expressed a desire to depose her position before the Parliamentary Information Technology Standing Committee but was not asked by the authorities to come here, Birla said there are rules and regulations that allow someone to be called to testify before a parliamentary commission.

“It’s inappropriate for someone to say, ‘The committee didn’t call me.’ There are systems and procedures in place for calling someone before a parliamentary commission. And the final decision rests with the Speaker of the Lok Sabha,” said Birla.

Speaking about the new parliament building being built as part of the Central Avenue project, Birla expressed confidence that this year’s winter session will be held in the new building.

“Work on the new building is in full swing. It will show glimpses of both modern India and our rich history. It will display the culture of all the states of India,” said Birla.

Birla, deputy of the second term BJP from Rajasthan, was unanimously elected Speaker of the Lok Sabha on 19 June 2019.

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