New Delhi: Cutting across party lines, members in the Lok Sabha on Friday condemned the sexist remarks made by Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan against a woman BJP member with several from the BJP demanding "exemplary" action against him as Speaker Om Birla on Friday assured the House that he will take a decision shortly.
Khan had sparked a controversy by making objectionable remarks against BJP MP Rama Devi when she was presiding over the House during the debate on the triple talaq bill yesterday.
"I will take a decision shortly after consulting leaders of various parties," Birla said at the end of an impromptu condemnation of Khan's remarks.
Speaking on the issue raised by BJP's Sanghmitra Maurya during Zero Hour, Biju Janata Dal's Bhratruhari Mahtab said the act of the SP member was "shameful" and "unpardonable" and urged the chair to take an exemplary action based on rules and precedents of the House.
"The House empowers you to take action. Go into the directions of previous Speakers and take action as per rules and regulations," he said. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman called Khan's remarks "utterly condemnable" and said it happened with a woman who was occupying the chair.
"It is very encouraging to see everyone stand up and speak in once voice condemning what happened yesterday. We look towards you (LS Speaker) for exemplary action against him," she said.
Sitharaman said to politicise an issue related to women is "outrageous" and the entire House has to stand together. There should not be any hesitation or dilemma in condemning it, she said. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi urged the Speaker to take most exemplary action in the matter.
"You are the custodian of the House. Many members have expressed their views. We have to maintain the decorum of the House. Without any ifs and buts and as suggested by Mahtabji, I urge you to take most exemplary action. I appeal to house leave the issue with Speaker," he said.
However, BJP's Nishikant Dubey sought immediate action against Khan citing rules of the proceedings of the House. "Since the ethics committee has not been yet constituted, you can take action," he said.
AIMIM's Asaduddin Owaisi also sought tough action against Khan, but at the same time, he took a swipe at the treasury benches raking up the issue of former minister M J Akbar, who is facing charges of sexual harassment.