Chowdhury, in another letter, urged Birla to ease the restrictions imposed on media to ensure free and fair coverage of proceedings of parliament during the Winter Session commencing Monday.
“On the eve of the coming parliament session, I would sincerely request you that as a mark of respect towards our ‘Annadata’, the House may unanimously pass a condolence resolution for the farmers who lost their lives during the farmer agitation.
“The passing of the resolution in the House will convey our gratitude for the sacrifice that our farmer brethren have given to the nation,” he said in his letter to the Speaker.
In another letter, he demanded that a new Deputy Speaker be appointed and cited Article 93 of the Constitution.
The article, he said, stipulates that the House of the People shall, as soon as may be, choose two members of the House to be respectively Speaker and Deputy Speaker thereof and, so often as the office of Speaker or Deputy Speaker becomes vacant, the House shall choose another member to be Speaker or Deputy Speaker, as the case may be.
He said the matter is pending in the Delhi High Court, which has asked the central government to explain its stand on petition which claimed that keeping the post of Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha vacant is a violation of Article 93 of the Constitution.
“In view of the above, I would request you to please initiate the process of appointment of the Deputy Speaker as it would also help you in the smooth conduct of business in the House,” Chowdhury said.
Raising the issue of restrictions on media, the Congress leader said during the past one and a half years, a majority of the media people were denied access to the Press Gallery and interactions with parliamentarians on the pretext of pandemic guidelines.
While malls, restaurants, cinema halls, marketplace and other public places have been opened due to the withdrawal of the COVID-19 curbs, the restrictions imposed during the pandemic are still on for the media persons as far as covering the proceedings of the Parliament is concerned, he pointed out.
“It is definitely against the spirit of parliamentary democracy. I am concerned that there is a dangerous trend emerging to isolate parliament and parliamentarians from media scrutiny.
“In view of the above, I appeal to you to ease the restrictions on the media persons in the Parliament complex and they should be allowed access to Press Gallery and all necessary facilities may be provided to them to cover parliament proceedings in a free and fair manner,” he said in his letter to the Speaker.
The winter session of Parliament starts from Monday and will continue till December 23.