9 member panel to probe video controversy involving AAP MP Mann (Third Lead)

New Delhi, July 25 (IANS) Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan on Monday set up a nine-member panel to probe the alleged breach of Parliament security by AAP lawmaker Bhagwant Mann and “advised” him not to attend the House till the issue is resolved.

Addressing the Lok Sabha as soon as it reassembled after the weekend break, Mahajan said taking audio video footage of security zones in Parliament by Punjab’s Sangrur MP Mann on July 21 and putting it up on social networking sites was improper.

“I have decided to constitute a nine-member Inquiry Committee to probe this incident and submit its report. The Inquiry Committee shall inquire into the serious security implications and related aspects arising out of the conduct of the audio visual recording,” Mahajan said.

She said Mann’s act put “security of the Parliament in peril”.

Mann has been asked to appear before the panel by 10.30 a.m. on July 26 (Tuesday) and make his submission.

The Speaker said the panel should submit its report by August 3 and till then Mann was “advised” not to attend the session.

“The Committee is requested to examine the matter expeditiously and is authorized to follow its own procedure. The report of the Committee will be presented to the House for its consideration,” Mahajan said.

“In view of the seriousness of the matter, Mann is advised not to attend the sittings of the House until a decision is taken in the matter,” she said.

Describing Parliament as the “sanctum sanctorum” of democracy, Mahajan recalled that on December 13, 2001, security personnel had sacrificed their lives for protecting Parliament and after that the entire security system was reviewed and overhauled.

Therefore, the “act of the member” of making an audio visual recording of the security checks inside Parliament and posting it on social media has “put the security of the Parliament in peril”, she said.

Mahajan said she had consulted leaders of all political parties and everyone supported her action on this issue.

The nine-member panel is headed by Bharatiya Janata Party MP Kirit Somaiya and includes Anandrao Adsul (Shiv Sena), Meenakshi Lekhi, Satya Pal Singh (both BJP), B. Mahtab (Biju Janata Dal), Ratna De Nag (Trinamool Congress), Thota Narasimhan (Telugu Desam Party), K.C. Venugopal (Congress) and P. Venugopal (AIADMK).

The panel has also been asked to “suggest remedial measures” so that such episodes are not repeated.

“The Committee should also suggest suitable remedial measures to avoid recurrence of such incidents in future and recommend appropriate action in the matter,” she said.

–IANS

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