The ruling BJP in Haryana got yet another shot in the arm Thursday when two MLAs – one each from the Indian National Lok Dal and the Congress – joined the party, a day before the Monsoon Session of the Vidhan Sabha, the last before the state goes to the polls, commences.
The brief session will end on Tuesday, with a two-day weekend break in between. INLD’s Ravinder Baliala (Ratia) and Congress’s Jagdish Yadav (Kosli) joined the BJP in the presence of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and party state president Subhash Barala. Both Baliala and Yadav said they have joined the BJP “unconditionally”.
“Good and able people are always welcome to join us, and our doors will remain open for them,” Khattar told reporters. The INLD has been decimated since it split last year over a feud in the Chautala family and several members switched over to the BJP.
The House is likely to witness a number of changes – the seating plan will change with Congress now becoming the main opposition party after the Indian National Lok Dal has been decimated to six MLAs from 19 that it had in 2014.
BJP is likely to introduce The Haryana Control of Organised Crime (HCOC) Bill. The proposed legislation is being drafted on the lines of Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA). Haryana government is considering to enact a special law with more stringent and deterrent provisions to deal with organised crime. This will grant government powers to intercept wire, electronic or oral communication to control the menace of organised crime.
Unlike previous monsoon sessions, where on an average 200-250 questions were being asked by the members, this time barely 125 questions will be asked in the three-day session. Besides, there are 10 Calling Attention Motions and two adjournment motions are likely to come up.
Congress, which will be donning the role of main opposition party in the House this time, will be targeting the Khattar government on the issues of illegal mining, regularisation of contractual employees, SYL canal issue and 24-hour power supply. The alleged scams including kilometre scheme scam in the transport department and scholarship scams are also likely to dominate House’s proceedings, beginning Friday.
In the 90-member Assembly, BJP has 48 MLAs. The INLD technically has 10 MLAs but four of them support the Jannayak Janata Party, which broke away from it. The Congress has 17 MLAs.
The INLD’s Abhay Singh Chautala lost the status of Leader of Opposition in the House as the desertions by the MLAs brought the party’s strength down. But the Congress, which is now the main opposition party in the state, is yet to pick a party MLA as Leader of Opposition.
Reacting to the INLD’s assertion that it will bring up “scams” involving the state government during the assembly session, Khattar said the opposition should not criticise just for the sake of it.
He said no one will get away with any corruption.
“Even if Manohar Lal is found guilty, the government and the party will not spare him,” he said.
Earlier in the day, the Jannayak Janata Party leader Dushyant Chautala also alleged that “scams” over issues like post-matric scholarships and illegal mining have surfaced. “The chief minister should issue a statement in the House on this,” he told reporters.
— With PTI inputs