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BJP MLAs Manjinder Singh Sirsa and Vijender Gupta were today marshalled out of the Delhi Assembly after they entered the Well demanding a discussion on the death of four sanitation workers in the city. The four-day session of Delhi Assembly had a noisy start as the opposition BJP raised the issue of sanitation workers while the slogan-shouting ruling AAP members targeted the BJP over the Chandigarh stalking incident in which the son of Haryana BJP chief is allegedly involved.
Amid the din, the Speaker adjourned the House twice-first for 15 minutes and then 30 minutes. As the House met after the first adjournment, Sirsa and Gupta again came into the well of the House demanding a discussion on the sanitation issue and refused to return to their seats when asked by Speaker Ram Nivas Goel. The AAP MLAs to followed suit and shouted anti-BJP slogans.
The speaker then adjourned the House for 30 minutes. The MLAs from both the sides again trooped into the Well when the proceedings resumed. The Speaker then asked the MLAs to go back to their seats.
The ruling party MLAs returned but the BJP legislators refused to budge. The Speaker then asked the marshals to escort Gupta out and he was removed forcibly. Later, Sirsa too was removed by the marshals as he continued to protest. The other BJP MLA Jagdish Pradhan returned to his seat.
The BJP has four MLAs in the 70-member Assembly. Its lawmaker O P Sharma was not present as he was earlier suspended for two sessions. Earlier, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia tried to reply to Gupta over the death of workers but he could not continue as the House was adjourned.
When the House met again, Sisodia said that there is a standing instruction that sewage should be cleaned mechanically, but the contractor allowed manually cleaning of the sewers. “The government has announced Rs 10 lakh each to the kin of sanitation workers who had died while cleaning sewers. The investigation is going in this case. If anyone is found guilty, strict action will be taken,” Sisodia had said.
Three weeks ago, four sanitation workers died of suffocation while cleaning a septic tank in south Delhi’s Ghitorni area. Five men had gone down to clean the tank in a household in the area but did not come out for long. Water Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam said that the government is working on new parameters so that there is no such incident in future. “Under new parameters (to clean sewer), the responsibility of officers and contractors will be fixed. We will ensure that there is no manual cleaning of sewer in the city, but if there is requirement of manual cleaning, a junior engineer will be on the spot.
“We are investigating the case. No one will be spared,” Gautam said. Sisodia said that the government will provide job of civil defence volunteers to one family member of sanitation workers who had died in the incident.