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Day 1 of UP Budget session: Oppn boycotts Governor’s address, walks out of House

Samajwadi Party (SP) leaders reached the Assembly on tractors carrying sugarcane, wheat and empty diesel barrels as a mark of protest. A minor scuffle broke out between them and police, which stopped them from entering the Vidhan Bhawan with sugarcane.

Written by Maulshree Seth | Lucknow |
February 19, 2021 4:59:24 am
Day 1 of UP Budget session: Oppn boycotts Governor’s address, walks out of HouseOpposition members display placards as they protest during Governor Anandiben Patel's addresses on the first day of the Budget Session of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly in Lucknow, Thursday Feb. 18, 2021. (PTI Photo/ Nand Kumar)

As the Budget session of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly began on Thursday, Opposition created an uproar inside as well as outside the House, raising the issues of the “murder of Unnao girls on Wednesday; atrocities against farmers, Dalits and backward as well as minority communities; and rising prices of petroleum products”.

Samajwadi Party (SP) leaders reached the Assembly on tractors carrying sugarcane, wheat and empty diesel barrels as a mark of protest. A minor scuffle broke out between them and police, which stopped them from entering the Vidhan Bhawan with sugarcane. Some of these leaders then climbed the gates of the Vidhan Bhawan boundary wall.

Later, they also held a “Kisan Panchayat” near the statue of farmer leader Chaudhary Charan Singh on the Vidhan Sabha premises before the session began amid heavy security force, including deployment of ATS commandos.

As soon as the Governor’s address to the joint House session began, Opposition leaders raised slogans and placards inside the Assembly. They alleged that the state government has lost control over law and order and failed to protect women and take care of farmers. Later, all members of the Opposition, including SP, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Congress, staged a walkout as Governor Anandiben Patel read her address.

“Uttar Pradesh mein kanoon vyavastha naam ki koi cheej nahi, Unnao ki ghantna ne hum sabko sharamsaar kiya hai… lekin yeh sarkar, unnao ki police uss ghatna ko dabana chahti hai (There is no law and order in Uttar Pradesh. The incident of Unnao has made us all feel ashamed. But this government and the Unnao police are trying to suppress the incident),” said SP legislator Sunil Singh, who was also part of the protest outside the House. He further alleged that the parents of the Unnao girls were made to sit at a police station for the entire night and are not being allowed to speak to anyone.

Leader of Opposition Ram Govind Chaudhary said the state government has lost control over crime. “Uttar Pradesh government is no longer capable of controlling law and order. There are incidents of rape, atrocities against women and murder each day. Farmers are sitting on protests for the last three months, inflation is at the top, there is corruption, unemployment. We are sitting at the statue of Chaudhary Charan Singh so that his spirit gives some sense to the government to act against the culprits,” he said.

He added, “Kewal do chaar apradhiyon ka encounter kar dene se apradh nahi rukta hai (Crime cannot be controlled through encounter of two or four criminals).”

Earlier in the day, as soon as the session began members of SP, BSP and Congress held several placards that read, “Dalit, Pichare, alpasankhyakon ka utpeeran band karo (Stop atrocities against Dalits and members of backward and minority communities)”, “kisan virodhi yeh sarkar nahi chalegi (Won’t allow anti-farmer government)” and “Rasoi gas ke barhe daam vapas lo (Withdraw hiked prices of cooking gas cylinders)”.

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