December 20, 2022
Derek O’Brien (Rajya Sabha) on 20.12.22 made a Point of Order on precedents for allowing issues to be raised under Rule 267
Sir, I have a point of order on Rule 267. It is a point of order on the ruling. Thank you, Sir. I am actually very grateful for bringing Rule 267 into focus. It is important and you have shared your thoughts today as well as yesterday. I am only on the Rules, Rules 266 and 267. I am referring today to two points. Please hear me out, Sir. Let us begin with page 95 of ‘Rajya Sabha at Work’. I would quickly read the relevant point. I quote — “The Chairman’s rulings constitute precedents which are of a binding nature. The Chairman’s rulings cannot be questioned or criticised and to protest against the ruling of the Chairman is contempt of the House and the Chairman.” I have referred to page 95, Sir. They constitute precedents. Coming to my second reference, may I take you to page 320? Sir, I am on the point of binding precedents. Please refer to page 320 of ‘Rajya Sabha at Work’. I am quoting from page 320 — “Rulings are given by the Chair according to precedents of the House and where there is no precedent, the usual parliamentary practice is followed.” A similar point, on page 131 of ‘Rajya Sabha at Work’, has to do with precedents. So, now that we have got precedents out of the way, I want to get to the precedents of Rule 267. Yesterday, the hon. Chairman quite correctly said that your predecessor, the honourable and much loved, Shri Venkaiah Naidu, did not accept a single notice under Rule 267. Sir, while that was true for the period from 2016 to 2022, I would like to draw your attention, very humbly, to the precedence of Rule 267 notices. Sir, I am talking about the precedence of notices. Dr. Shankar Dayal Sharma, 1990-92, accepted four Rule 267 notices, Shri Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, Vice-President of India and Chairman, Rajya Sabha, accepted three Rule 267 notices and Shri Hamid Ansari, VicePresident of India and Chairman, Rajya Sabha, accepted four Rule 267 notices. Sir, I humbly beseech you, your predecessors, not the predecessor — that is the guidance we are looking from you, Sir — accepted Rule 267 notices. I agree with you, it can’t be accepted every week. I agree with you that it can’t be every month, but Rule 267 is a living Rule which can be accepted twice or three times every year. That is my limited point, Sir. Please, Sir, I must make a point here. …(Interruptions)… I am the Parliamentary Party Leader of the All India Trinamool Congress. I retired from being a Quiz Master in 2011. Treat me for who I am and what I do. Thank you, Sir.