BJP MLA O P Sharma caused an uproar in the Delhi assembly Monday with his alleged derogatory remarks against AAP MLA Amanatullah Khan, prompting Speaker Ram Niwas Goel to refer the matter to the privileges committee for examination, investigation and report.
Sharma’s remarks were expunged from House records. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal hit out at Sharma and the BJP, saying the words used formed part of a “design to divide India” on religious lines. Khan, on his part, claimed that Sharma had used a similar disparaging word against him in 2015 as well.
When contacted, Sharma, MLA from Vishwas Nagar, said he did not require any “certificate of patriotism” from Kejriwal who had “questioned the surgical strikes carried out by the Indian Army and also sided with students of JNU who raised anti-national slogans”.
“I used the term terrorist and will use it again. I used it in the context of him creating an atmosphere of terror in the House by shouting down the voice of the Opposition. Is this not a kind of terrorism?” Sharma said.
He alleged Khan tried to shout him down when he raised grievances related to water and sewer concerning people of his constituency. Kejriwal holds the water portfolio.
During the proceedings in the House, when Sharma raised the issue of water woes, Khan said it was because of non-cooperation of officials. A heated exchange followed and Sharma’s remarks led to an uproar, forcing the Speaker to adjourn the House for 30 minutes.
In 2016, Sharma was suspended from two sessions over his use of certain disparaging remarks against AAP’s Chandni Chowk MLA Alka Lamba. He was also arrested following an attack on journalists and a CPI leader outside Patiala House Courts where former JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar was being produced.
Khan, MLA from Okhla, has also courted controversies in the past. He was arrested in February for allegedly assaulting Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash at Kejriwal’s residence.