FURIOUS Ian Blackford issued a Commons challenge after Tories laughed down his fears over the forced return of MPs to parliament.

The UK Government wants all MPs to go back to parliament after a temporary switch to remote working during the pandemic.

But the Covid-19 crisis is not over and politicians from different parties have raised grave fears about public safety.

It has been suggested that some could become super spreaders if pushed back into travelling between their constituencies and Westminster.

In a debate live now, leader of the House Jacob Rees-Mogg has said the UK political system can ony work if people turn up in person, saying parliament "has not worked effectively on behalf of constituents" since remote working began.

Blackford told how he had made a 16 hour journey by various modes to make the session, with Orkney and Shetland member Alistair Carmichael forced into an 18 hour trek.

But as he laid out acute fears over public safety, several members on the Tory benches laughed.

Blasting back, Blackford said: "Really, you think this is funny?

"This is serious because we're talking about the lives of our constituents."

The Procedure Committe of the House of Commons has said virtual sessions should continue.

Under the proposals to be voted on today, MPs who are shielding would be spared Commons attendance, but unable to vote.

The move has been rated discriminatory and the SNP's Patrick Grady said it was inappropriate that MPs should be required to disclose their medical conditions in order to take part in parliament business.

He told Rees-Mogg many of his party colleagues would "not be very happy" over the matter.

Rees-Mogg replied: "The honourable member says there are lots of SNP MPs who will not be very happy. I have a nasty feeling that is often the state of SNP MPs and I wish them every happiness."