The Congress party on Wednesday postponed a sit-in protest by its lawmakers outside Parliament after reportedly failing to get other political parties on board but continued to disrupt Parliament over various scams involving the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) forcing both Houses to adjourn.
Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi were to participate in the protest as the party appeared in no mood to let the government pass key reform bills.
Rahul refused to speak to the media on external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj's tweet alleging that a senior Congress leader approached her for a diplomatic passport for coal scam accused Santosh Bagrodia prompting the former minister to retort that his name was unnecessarily being dragged in.
"We will speak in Parliament," he said.
In a series of tweets, Swaraj, who is facing opposition heat for allegedly supporting tainted former IPL chief Lalit Modi's bid for British travel papers, said she will reveal the name of the Congress leader in Parliament.
"A senior Congress leader was pressing me hard to give diplomatic passport to the Coal Scam accused Santosh Bagrodia...I will disclose name of the leader on the floor of the House," she tweeted.
Shortly afterwards, Bagrodia hit back saying that he himself had approached the foreign minister for a diplomatic passport.
"I am eligible for a diplomatic passport. I can't see why my name is dragged into this, " Bagrodia told India Today TV.
According to CNN-IBN news channel, Swaraj has said she will speak on the issue in Lok Sabha.
India Today TV reported quoting sources that the Congress changed strategy and decided to confront the government after it failed to get the support of parties like the Samajwadi Party and the Biju Janata Dal.
The opposition parties, however, continued their attack on the government demanding the resignations of Swaraj, Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje and Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Chouhan, forcing an early adjournment of Lok Sabha.
Congress MPs protest in the House by wearing black bands only to be chided by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan. Some MPs were also seen carrying placards in the House after Opposition ruckus in the Lower House.
Amid the chaos, Mahajan rejected Congress' adjournment motion and adjourned the House till noon. Prime Minister Narendra Modi was present in the House when it was adjourned amid loud protests.
While Swaraj and Raje are under fire for helping tainted former IPL chief Lalit Modi, who faces an Enforcement Department probe for alleged money laundering and forex violations, Chouhan is under pressure to quit over the Vyapam admission and recruitment scandal.
Similar scene played out in Rajya Sabha as the Opposition stuck to its guns demanding Swaraj's resignation despite the government's stance that it is ready for a discussion on the controversy.
"You want to discuss Sushma Swaraj, start the discussion on the issue right now," said finance Arun Jaitley amid the ruckus.
Jaitley sought to turn the heat back on the opposition saying that any debate over scams in statesshould also involve Kerala and Assam, where Congress chief ministers Oommen Chandy and Tarun Gogoi are facing corruption charges.
The ruckus forced deputy chairman PJ Kurien to adjourn the Upper House for 15 minutes.
On Tuesday, the monsoon session of Parliament began and ended on stormy notes amid signs of continued disruption over the demand for the resignation of Swaraj and BJP chief ministers in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.
Lok Sabha was adjourned immediately after it met as a mark of tribute to a sitting member who died away recently. Wednesday is the first working day of the Lower House in the session which concludes on August 13.
Rajya Sabha witnessed repeated adjournments with Congress members trooping into the well of the House to press their demand for foreign minister's resignation. It was supported by parties like CPI(M) as well as the Samajwadi Party.