New Delhi: Signifying a ‘total breakdown’, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday announced it would not be attending any meetings called by Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar or Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath.

Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj attacked Congress President Sonia Gandhi for inciting MPs and Ministers to disrupt her speech in the Lok Sabha earlier on Tuesday morning. "It is a situation of total breakdown but the government is responsible, not me," Swaraj said.

Adding that the ‘countdown’ for the government's fall had begun, the BJP leader also said Gandhi had no respect for democratic institutions. "The Congress Chief incited ministers to interrupt my speech. The Congress President does not care about Indian democracy and she does not believe in democratic institutions," she said.

"I was expecting the Lok Sabha Speaker to come to my support as it was agreed upon at the all-party meeting on Monday that I could make a statement on reasons for BJP disrupting the Parliament. But Congress members began interrupting me within two minutes of my speech. The Speaker did not come to my support and in fact told me to sit down. The BJP has decided not to attend any meetings called by the speaker and not engage in any talks with the Parliamentary Affairs Minister," she said.

BJP sought changes in Lokpal legislation

"The UPA government has denigrated the institution of the Law Officers. It is this failing institution that has today embarrassed the UPA government. The rap that the government received from the Apex Court on this issue was well deserved. The delinquent must be held accountable. This is an occasion where the government must display some sense of responsibility and accept the suggestions which we made to the Select Committee on the Lokpal legislation."

He also said that the present controversy flags the issue in relation to the independence and autonomy of the offices of the Law Officers as much as it does of CBI. "Since we live in an age where institutions are being gradually eroded, it is necessary that unless we are able to reconstruct and rebuild these institutions, there should be a panel of lawyers independent of the government which must advise and appear for CBI. These lawyers must be appointed by the Director of Prosecution with the prior approval of the Lokpal," the BJP leader said.


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