After his eight questions for Ministers yesterday in a fierce row over parliament, Trinamool Congress leader Derek O’Brien today put up a new video on “Friday the 13th”, firing a question straight to “their boss” Prime Minister Narendra Modi and declared “Your time starts now”.
The Trinamool MP questioned PM Modi on his absence in Rajya Sabha during the passing of a constitutional bill to allow states and Union Territories to draw up their own list of other backward communities (OBCs).
NEW. Here’s our 2nd video in 24 hrs. I asked 8 Qs to Ministers about #Parliament
Mr PM, here’s a straight Q for you.
Why were U missing from Parliament? The two former PMs were there & voted on Constitution Amendment 127 #OBCBill, where were you?
VIDEO #2 pic.twitter.com/eNFaD5Z77v
— Derek O’Brien | ডেরেক ও’ব্রায়েন (@derekobrienmp) August 13, 2021
He began by commenting that 24 hours after his eight direct questions on parliament to ministers, there had been no answer.
“They have not answered any of the eight questions. I am not surprised because they don’t have the answer to those eight questions. Let’s try their boss… and let’s slip in some picture clues to make it easier,” Mr O’Brien said.
“Here is a straight question to you,” he aimed at PM Modi.
“Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and former Prime Minister Deve Gowda – they were present during voting on a constitutional bill. There were six rounds of voting on the constitutional bill, the OBC bill. It was very, very crucial,” the Trinamool leader said, with the video showing shots of both former PMs in the house.
“Mr Prime Minister, why were you missing from parliament? Why are you ignoring parliament? Where were you Mr Prime Minister? You are mocking parliament. You and your government are accountable to the people, are accountable to people’s representatives, you are accountable to the parliament. It’s your duty to answer us now. Eight ministers couldn’t, Prime Minister your time starts now.”
This was also one of the eight questions he had asked in his previous video yesterday.
The monsoon session of parliament, which ended before time on Wednesday, was a virtual washout because of the deadlock between the government and the opposition over issues ranging from the Pegasus snooping scandal to fuel prices and farmer protests.
Since parliament convened on July 19, the opposition has been demanding a discussion and an independent inquiry led by a Supreme Court judge – serving or retired – into reports that an Israeli spyware sold only to governments was used to target phones of opposition leaders, judges, activists and even ministers.
On Thursday, the government said the opposition must apologise for “disruptive (and) threatening behaviour” that forced Parliament to close two days early.