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E Ahamed Death Row: How Govt Went Ahead to Present Union Budget

New Delhi: The alleged secrecy over the death of former Minister of State for External Affairs and MP E Ahamed rocked Lok Sabha on Friday and led to a political slug fest between the Centre and the Opposition parties.

While the Kerala MPs sought to know why the news of the deceased MP was with held for over two hours, the family has alleged that they were prevented by bouncers from seeing the MP in the ICU of the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital .

Why death did not deter govt on Budget day?

– Following the convention Lok Sabha could have been adjourned for a day while shifting the budget presentation for the next day.

– Possible reason govt avoided doing so

– No rule- There are no categorical rules that make it mandatory for the house to be adjourned for a day in case of a sitting MP’s death.

– Precedence – On July 31, 1974, Lok Sabha speaker allowed Finance minister Y B Chavan to present the budget after the death of minister M B Rana.

On April 19, 1954, sitting MP J P Soren died on the day of the railway budget but the house proceedings were held as scheduled.

– Leak fear – Government may have been apprehensive that the budget may get leaked if delayed, as it had been printed for distribution.

What could have been done?

– Budget could have been presented in the Rajya Sabha as E Ahamed was not a member of the upper house.

Possible reason the government avoided doing so.

– Opposition fear – NDA government may have feared Opposition obstruction as it lacks numbers in the Upper house.

But E. Ahamed’s death leaves some unanswered questions.

– Why were family members, colleagues denied glimpses of the ailing MP?

– Why was Ahamed shifted from open ICU  to closed trauma centre?

– Why RML hospital attempted medical procedure without family’s consent?

– Why extreme secrecy was maintained by the hospital authorities regarding Ahamed’s health status?

– Why was there no medical bulletin on his condition?

– If hospital authorities went incommunicado after MoS at the PMO  Jitendra Singh visited the hospital?

– If the government delayed Ahamed’s death announcement to facilitate the presentation of the budget?