Former Congress MP from Rajahmundry Vundavalli Arun Kumar's latest book Vibhajana Katha is creating ripples in political and media circles with its sensational revelations on how Andhra Pradesh bifurcation bill was passed in Lok Sabha on February 18, 2014.
Vundavalli dedicated as many as 18 pages to narrate the discussion that went on for over an hour during the lunch break on that day in the chambers of Speaker Meira Kumar, in which senior Congress leaders S Jaipal Reddy and Kamal Nath besides Opposition leader Sushma Swaraj took part.
When the Speaker, Kamal Nath and Sushma expressed their helplessness over the passage of the bill because of the chaotic situation in the House and also lack of adequate number of the Congress and the BJP members in the House, Jaipal came out with a suggestion that the Speaker, using her discretionary powers, could get the bill passed through voice vote.
While admitting that it was against the rules and procedures of Parliament, Jaipal told the Speaker and Sushma that there was no option but to break these rules to form the Telangana state.
“Since both the Congress and the BJP are in favour of the Telangana formation, the bill could be passed through voice vote. The only point is that majority of the Congress and the BJP MPs are not present in the House,” Jaipal said.
When the Speaker said it might not be possible because the proceedings were being telecast live, Jaipal suggested that the live telecast could be stopped on technical grounds and the doors could be closed. Reluctantly, Meira and Sushma had to agree for it.
“This is what I could visualise after going through the records of the Parliament on that day. I have realised that a great betrayal was done not only for Seemandhra, but also the Constitution,” Vundavalli said in the book.
It is a different matter that Jaipal described the entire narration as a figment of imagination by Vundavalli, as no rules were broken in the passage of bill. The live telecast could have been stopped keeping in view the pepper spray incident that happened a couple of days earlier.