The Budget session of Gujarat Legislative Assembly began on Monday with a security breach as a few cars without proper number plates managed to enter the parking lot of the complex recently renovated at a cost of Rs 135 crore.
One SUV, without any number plates on either side, was seen parked within about 100 metres of the main assembly building. It had displayed only “MLA Gujarat” in bold red print at the rear as well as on top of its dashboard, totally illegal as per RTO and traffic rules.
Though it is not known whether the SUV really belongs to a legislator or not, this tendency of removing number plates is in tune with the locals innovating various ways to hoodwink the authorities. Several two-wheeler riders here have removed their rear number plates soon after the CCTV cameras have been installed to record traffic offences for sending e-challans.
In any case, the local police never takes action against the rear number plates displaying only caste names, mostly “Patel”, “Rajput” and “Thakore”, offences which never enter the statistics compiled by the Crime Records Bureaus.
Inside the Assembly, the Governor’s address was disrupted by slogan shouting of Opposition Congress legislators who wanted to raise issues like self-immolation by a Dalit activist and denial of Narmada water to farmers in the coming sowing season.
The House was adjourned amid the din just after Governor O P Kohli had read his address for about five minutes.
Conspicuous by his absence in the House was Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani who was arrested on Sunday while proceeding to protest the self-immolation of Dalit activist Bhanubhai Vankar. Released on Sunday night, Jignesh chose to attend the funeral of Bhanubhai on Monday morning but later attended the House after it was reconvened following the adjournment.
Earlier in the day, the Governor inaugurated the renovated assembly building and BJP legislator from Vadodara, Rajendra Trivedi was unanimously chosen as the Speaker. Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel would present the State Budget on Tuesday.