Both houses of parliament were adjourned within moments amid loud opposition protests and demands for an investigation into allegations linked to the Adani Group and investments of public sector firms.
The disruptions stalled both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha soon after a meeting in which most opposition parties decided to participate in discussions while maintaining their demand for a probe. Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and K Chandrasekhara Rao's Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) were the exceptions, insisting that there should be no discussion in parliament without a debate on fraud allegations involving the Adani Group.
The Congress, AAP, Samajwadi Party and a dozen other parties discussed the opposition's strategy in the meeting at Leader of Opposition Mallikarjun Kharge's office in parliament. Most parties, barring AAP and BRS, favoured "cooperating with parliament proceedings" and allowing the traditional debate on the President's opening address.
The opposition parties said while they were ready to end the blockade, their priority would be to demand Prime Minister Narendra Modi's response to US-based short seller Hindenburg's allegations of accounting fraud by Adani Group companies.
"Most Opposition parties have decided to participate in parliamentary proceedings from today and continue to raise their demand for a JPC (Joint Parliamentary Committee) into the PM-linked Adani 'Maha mega scam'," Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said in a tweet after the meeting.
Opposition parties allege that the recent meltdown in Adani Group shares involves public money, as public sector companies LIC (Life Insurance Corporation of India) and SBI (State Bank of India) have invested in them. The Adani group says it has complied with all laws and disclosure requirements.
Both houses of parliament have been disrupted repeatedly because of protests linked to the Hindenburg-Adani row.
Though there is a broad consensus among opposition parties on calling for a joint parliamentary probe into the allegations, there are differences over a strategy to corner the ruling BJP.
AAP and BRS are against tamping down the protests in parliament unless the government agrees to a debate on the stock market turmoil following the Hindenburg allegations.
Gautam Adani's ports-to-energy business empire has lost more than $100 billion in value since the Hindenburg report emerged. The Adani Group has called the Hindenburg report a "malicious combination of selective misinformation and stale, baseless and discredited allegations that have been tested and rejected by India's highest courts".