New Delhi, Dec 4: Disruptions continued in the Lok Sabha for the third successive day Thursday over Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti's abusive remark with the opposition demanding a statement by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue.
As soon as the house assembled for the day, opposition parties, led by the Congress, demanded that Modi make a statement over the remarks made by the minister.
Congress leader of the house Mallikarjun Kharge said: "Yesterday (Wednesday), we had demanded that since the prime minster had come, he should make a statement on the issue and sack the minister."
The Congress also moved an adjournment motion on the hike in excise duty on petrol, which the speaker disallowed.
Members of the opposition, including the Congress and the Trinamool Congress, then trooped near the speaker's podium and raised slogans "Achche din kahan kahan gaye, PM Modi jawaab do." (Where have the promises of good days gone, PM Modi give an answer.)
The house was disrupted for more than an hour but the speaker continued with the question hour amid the din.
After the question hour was over, Speaker Sumitra Mahajan invited Kharge to speak, who reiterated his demand for the prime minister's statement on the issue.
The Congress leader of the house hinted that the speaker was under pressure to not allow the opposition to have its say in the Lok Sabha.
"We are also sad, you are also sad. The prime minister should make a statement. We just wanted this as he is the leader of the Lok Sabha and the prime minister of the country," Kharge said.
"So many people were protesting today and asking you... at least 80-90 people. I cannot say that you were under pressure, but an environment was created and we were made to feel this," he said.
"We protested peacefully. But still we were not given opportunity," he said.
"If the house runs like this, then it is a threat to democracy," he said, adding: "We condemn this behaviour of the government."
Amid shouts of protest from the ruling benches, the speaker said her decisions had been in accordance with the rules of the house.
"There are some rules of the Lok Sabha and I have to go according to that. I have allowed when you when you gave notices," she said.
"You had asked for an apology from the minister. It had happened yesterday (Wednesday). All your concerns were addressed. There is no pressure on the chair, the minister has herself apologised and the issue should rest," she said.
The prime minister, however, made a statement in the Rajya Sabha, saying that the minister had apologised and the house should now function.