Cancel parliament panel meet on internet ban in Jammu and Kashmir, Nishikant Dubey tells Shashi Tharoor

In a letter, Dubey said that the panel should not deliberate on the issue as it will be disregarding an advisory by Lok Sabha Speaker OM Birla which stated that the panel may not take up those issues for examination which are pending in courts

Press Trust of India August 26, 2020 18:30:45 IST
Cancel parliament panel meet on internet ban in Jammu and Kashmir, Nishikant Dubey tells Shashi Tharoor

BJP MP and member of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology Nishikant Dubey on Wednesday appealed to the panel's chairman and Congress leader Shashi Tharoor to cancel a meeting on suspension of Internet services in various states and Union Territories, including Jammu and Kashmir.

Dubey's letter came a day after Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla issued an advisory to chairmen of all parliamentary panels asking them to strictly adhere to rules and regulations while conducting committee meetings.

Birla issued the advisory following a political slugfest between BJP and opposition members of the parliamentary panel on information technology over taking up the issue of suspension of Internet services in Jammu and Kashmir and summoning Facebook before the committee in its next meeting.

"Since this issue is presently pending before the Supreme Court of India, any further deliberations on this would again be a violation of the relevant rules/directions as well as disregarding the recently issued advisory of the Lok Sabha Speaker," Dubey wrote in his letter to Tharoor.

Tharoor has been under attack from BJP MPs who have demanded his removal as the chairman of the panel.

Referring to the Lok Sabha speaker's instructions, Dubey said the advisory has clearly stated that the proceedings of the committee shall be treated as confidential and the panel may not take up those issues for examination which are pending in courts.

"Therefore, (I) appeal to your good-self that the sitting of the committee on information technology convened for the aforementioned purpose may be immediately revoked," the BJP MP said.

He also requested Tharoor to not take up those issues for deliberation in the committee which are of national importance as otherwise, the panel would again be showing discourtesy to the desire of the Speaker.

Underlining that conducting the affairs of parliamentary panels' meeting lie on the shoulder of the chairman, the BJP MP said that not just he, but other members of the IT panel too has experienced that the "agenda of our meetings are being decided in front of media and camera glare/bite."

The subjects which were selected by the panel after intensive deliberations have been put on the back burner while "small issues, which may hit the news headlines for a while" are being taken up in the committee deliberations, Dubey said.

"This gives an impression that the platform of the Committee on Information Technology is being used for gaining political mileage and raising baseless controversies, one after the other," he said.

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