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Lok Sabha to debate Dalit issue, flood situation

Lok Sabha to debate Dalit issue and flood situation


After a series of incidents against Dalits across the country, the Lok Sabha is now likely to take up for debate the issue of atrocities against Dalits on Thursday, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said.

The Business Advisory Committee of the House which met on Tuesday decided that the debate may be taken on Thursday, he said.

Earlier in the house, Congress floor leader Mallikarjun Kharge and others had raised the issue and sought chair’s intervention to allow early debate, but Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said that the decision on debate time and rule can be decided by the business advisory committee only.

The business advisory panel also favoured a debate on the flood situation in the country on Friday, the last day of the Monsoon Session, which largely saw success on the part of treasury bench in ensuring passage a number of important bills including the long-delayed Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill.

"The issue of Dalit atrocities will be taken up on Thursday," Kumar later said adding the government is never hesitant to discuss any issue including the anti-Dalit violence.

The government, sources said, is now not against a debate on violence against Dalit after Prime Minister Narendra Modi has slammed self-styled "gau rakshaks (cow vigilante groups)".

On August 6, the Prime Minister broke his silence on cow vigilante and asserted that he felt "anguished" over incidents of vigilantism and asked state governments to prepare a dossier of such "self-styled gau rakshaks".

The Modi government at the Centre and BJP governments in Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh have come under strong criticism for attacks on Dalits and Muslims by vigilante groups amid the charge that the law enforcement agencies remained mute spectators.