The Opposition Congress MLAs staged a walkout from the House again on Wednesday over the issue of suspension of five party MLAs, including Leader of Opposition, Mukesh Agnihotri, on 26 February, the first day of the budget session of Himachal Pradesh Assembly.
As soon as the House assembled for the day, former Deputy Speaker and senior Congress member, Jagat Singh Negi got up to raise the issue. He said after adjournment of the House at 11.16 AM on the first day of session on 26 February after the Governor’s brief address, the House was recalled in the afternoon for which the Congress members were not timely intimated. “We got the message at 12.46 PM that the House has been recalled at 12.50 PM. How can we reach back at such a short notice?” Negi said.
He said the decision on suspension was taken in one sided manner.
Speaker Vipin Singh Parmar asked the Congress member to sit down and said he will give ruling on the issue after the Question Hour. The Congress members, however, insisted to address the issue immediately and started raising slogans against the government. They later walked out of the House.
After the Question Hour, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur condemned the behaviour of Opposition members on the first day of the budget session and the following days. He said what Congress did on the first day (involving Governor) warranted strict action.
The five Congress MLAs were suspended on the first day of budget session for the entire session till 20 March for blocking the passage of Governor, manhandling his staff outside the Speaker’s gate and banging his official vehicle when he was going back to Raj Bhawan after his address in Assembly. They are also facing a FIR for alleged assault on the Governor.
While the suspended Congress MLAs sat on dharna outside the Assembly gate even on Wednesday, the other Congress MLAs have been walking out from the House everyday protesting against the suspension of five members, raising different aspects. The Congress members have not participated in any proceedings of the House after the first day, except for obituary references.