Derek O'Brien had accused the government of using the pandemic as an excuse to "murder democracy"
There will be no Question Hour in the two-day monsoon session in Bengal next week and the state's ruling party has been accused of "double standards" as it had fiercely protested a similar decision for parliament.
"There will be no Question Hour during the upcoming monsoon session due to the shortage of time and the ongoing COVID-19 situation," said Speaker Biman Banerjee, according to news agency ANI.
MPs of Bengal's ruling Trinamool Congress, including Derek O'Brien and Mahua Moitra, had hit out at the BJP-led central government over the decision to cancel Question Hour in the 18-day parliament session beginning September 14.— Md Salim (@salimdotcomrade) September 4, 2020
Responding to allegations of hypocrisy, Rajya Sabha member Derek O'Brien said: "No parliament session below five days has had a question hour. Only one exception is the 1962 china war. The Bengal session is two days long. Don't compare apples and oranges."
He also tweeted.
North Korean godi TV comparing a 20day “regular” #ParliamentMonsoonSession to a two-day session of a State Assembly! Sessions of a few days in #Parliament NEVER have #QuestionHour (except China war 1962). Don't compare apples & oranges. Research. Or come to us for a tutorial.????— Derek O'Brien | ডেরেক ও'ব্রায়েন (@derekobrienmp) September 4, 2020
After a huge outcry earlier this week from several opposition parties including the Congress, the government said it would allow "unstarred questions" -- meaning written questions that will receive written responses. Derek O'Brien had accused the government of using the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse to "murder democracy" and avoid answering questions on Covid and the economy.
His party's Mahua Moitra, a Lok Sabha MP, had tweeted: "Asking questions in Court is Contempt Asking questions outside Parliament is Sedition And now Asking questions inside Parliament is Forbidden."