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Speaker in dilemma over inviting Buddha

Meira Kumar will be among the speakers at the three day celebrations starting December 4.

Written by Sabyasachi Bandopdhyay | Kolkata |
November 13, 2013 4:12:28 am

The state government is undecided over inviting former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee for the closing ceremony of the platimum jubilee celebrations of the state assembly.

Assembly Speaker Biman Banerjee Tuesday said that he had no intention to get Bhattacharjee seated in the visitors’ gallery. “I have not yet taken the final call. I cannot get him seated inside the House because he is not a member. Also,I cannot arrange for his seat in the gallery because that will beundermining the former CM’s dignity. I cannot show disrespect to people such as the former CM or former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee,’’ Banerjee said after a meeting at his chamber at the state Assembly where members of the opposition raised the demand for inviting the former CM and former Speaker.

President Pranab Mukherjee and Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar will be among the speakers at the three day celebrations starting December 4. The Lok Sabha Speaker will also inaugurate a seminar titled ‘Challenges before parliamentary democracy’. The Speaker has also invited Speakers of other states’ Assemblies to attend the programme.

It may be noted that both Somnath Chatterjee and former Assembly Speaker Hasim Abdul Halim had attended the inaugural ceremony of the platinum jubilee celebrations on August 13 last year and were seated inside the House. Senior TMC leader Saugata Roy too was seated inside the House and delivered his speech.

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“We raised the demand and the Speaker said he would take a decision later,” Leader of Opposition Suryakanta Mishra said.

Former minister Anisur Rehman attacked the state government,saying it should show minimum respect to a former CM who remained in power for 10 years. “It shows they have given up all political decency,” Rehman said.

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