Former cricketer Sachin Tendulkar during his cricketing days maintained an impressive 54.08 average in test cricket. But when it comes to Rajya Sabha his “average” or attendance stands at a dismal 6.6% as according to reports, he has barely managed to attend the upper house for 22 out of 348 working days since his nomination in 2012.
So it might have come as a pleasant surprise to his colleagues, when it was reported that not only was Sachin attending Rajya Sabha, he was also initiating his first debate in the upper house. The matter pertained to a lack of proper training facilities for our athletes and a lack of financial assistance for retired sportspersons.
In order to conduct this discussion, Sachin had requested time for carrying out a short discussion on this topic and was allotted a 2:00 PM slot on Thursday.
But rather than allowing Sachin to carry out a fruitful discussion regarding an issue which plagues Indian athletes, Congress’ Rajya Sabha members decided to create a ruckus in the house to disrupt proceedings ( Video via @News18Punjab):
When Sachin Tendulkar was not allowed to speak in #RajyaSabha@sachin_rt@BCCI@YUVSTRONG12@harbhajan_singh@rajyasabhatv#SachinTendulkar@imVkohli@virendersehwag@sherryontopp
Video Courtesy: Rajya Sabha TV pic.twitter.com/b4PxkYnvSm
— News18Punjab (@News18Punjab) December 21, 2017
As seen in the above video, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu is trying to calm the Congress members down, and in doing so reminded them that a honourable member who has been awarded Bharat Ratna wanted to make a submission. He is also seen urging the Congress MPs to sit down and maintain decorum. Sachin meanwhile is seen standing with a bemused expression.
The Congress almost predictably didn’t pay heed to Naidu and decided to continue their sloganeering and even didn’t stop after being reminded that the whole nation was witnessing their ruckus.
The motive behind this ruckus seemed to be that the Congress was demanding that PM Modi should clarify his remarks about former PM Manmohan Singh, which he made during the Gujarat Elections.
After the issue played out, the media predictably questioned the Congress and one of its senior leaders, rather than apologising for her party’s conduct decided to ‘justify’ it:
Does ‘Bharat Ratna’ give you licence to speak (in Parliament)?: Congress MP Renuka Chowdhary on Sachin Tendulkar not being able to make his maiden speech in Rajya Sabha due to din raised by Congress over Manmohan Singh, 2G issue
— Bharti Jain (@bhartijainTOI) December 21, 2017
Going by the above tweet by the TOI journalist, Renuka Choudhary, is seen rhetorically questioning as to whether receiving a Bharat Ratna provides someone a “license” to speak in the Rajya Sabha.
Some might argue that such an outlook by a senior congress leader shows the party’s disregard towards not only honourable Rajya Sabha members and the upper house but also towards the nation’s highest award the Bharat Ratna. Time and again, Congress has proven its elitist mentality and this seems to be just one more incident.