Chandigarh: Hours after a panel probing Bhagwant Mann's video issue was granted two more weeks and the leader asked not to attend the House till a decision is taken on the matter, the AAP MP said he should be allowed to take part in the proceedings till the committee files its report.
The Sangrur MP said he is being "stopped from raising the voice of people including those of poor and Dalits". "They (Lok Sabha panel) can throw me out. But at least they should make the decision fast. Now they have taken two more weeks...Let the panel probe the matter but I should be allowed to attend the House till then. I am not held guilty yet. They want to suppress my voice," Mann told PTI.
Speaker Sumitra Mahajan granted two more weeks to the House panel probing the issue and asked him not to attend the proceedings till a decision is taken.
"Now with the grant of two weeks more to the panel, I am virtually out of the Parliament session which will go on till 12 August. I wanted to raise the issue of poor, the Dalits, the unemployed. Now I will not be able to raise these issues," he said. He said he will not change his reply given to the Lok Sabha Speaker on this issue.
"They (panel) want me to change my reply. They want me to delete the name of Prime Minister and ISI. I will not do that," he claimed. In a letter to the Speaker, Mann had said the Prime Minister was "100 times more guilty" than him for "inviting ISI" to probe the 2 January terror attack on the Pathankot airbase that had left seven security personnel dead.
Mann said he does not know what the panel wants to do with him. "I am clear I never intended to put the Parliament's (security) in danger. I had tendered my unconditional apology. But despite that the panel was formed and it means my apology
was not accepted," he said.
"I am ready to sacrifice my seat for the sake of democracy. I don't have problem if they want to throw me out. But they cannot throw me out of people's heart. I wanted to bring people closer to the democracy. They are not talking about the lucky draw and they are just stuck on security breach," he said.
He said he would hold eight rallies between 7 August and 10 at several places in Punjab. To a query on demand of three Parliamentarians requesting the Speaker to send him to a "rehab centre", alleging he comes to the House "intoxicated", Mann, said, "What proof they have".
Akalis are scared of their defeat in 2017 Punjab elections and are launching wrong propaganda against me." The panel was set up a week after Mann had put out in the social media a video of his vehicle passing security barricades and entering the Parliament complex.
He had also videographed a room where Parliament questions were being sorted. On 1 August, a defiant Mann told the panel that he has not breached the security of Parliament complex.