July 18, 2016 6:10:24 pm
Assam Assembly’s Budget session began on a stormy note on Monday as both Opposition and ruling party members raised slogans against each other over the auction of 12 oilfields and price rise following hike in VAT, leading to a brief adjournment and walkout.
As soon as the Question Hour ended, members from Congressand AIUDF sought permission from the Speaker to discuss the proposed auctioning of 12 oilfields in Assam in view of the ongoing agitation across the state against it.
Leader of Opposition Debabrata Saikia and AIUDF MLA Hafiz Bashir Ahmed submitted two separate adjournment motions to discuss the issue along with a notice by former minister Ajanta Neog.
Speaker Ranjeet Kumar Dass accepted Neog’s notice, which does not give any scope for discussion or debate. At this, Opposition members urged the Speaker to allow a discussion by accepting any one of the adjournment motions by the two members.
When the Speaker stuck to his stand, Congress and AIUDF MLAs went to the Well pressing for their demand. “Speaker sir, please be neutral for the sake of Assam and in the interest of people of Assam,” Congress MLA Abdul Khaleque said.
Suddenly, first-time BJP MLA Suman Haripriya, who was sitting on the second last row in the House, ran into the Well claiming that the Opposition members are going to attack the Speaker. Other BJP MLAs also rushed to the well.
Both sides started sloganeering with the Opposition members displaying placards against the proposed auction and price rise.
At this, the Speaker adjourned the House for five minutes. As soon as the House reassembled, Congress and AIUDF members again pressed for their demands leading to resumption of noisy scene.
“I will follow the books. A Speaker can disallow a matter even if it is of a public interest if he thinks that way,” Dass said.
The Opposition legislators again walked into the well with their placards, while the ruling party members kept shouting against them from their respective seats.
When the Speaker moved ahead with the scheduled business of the day, the entire Opposition walked out of the House for the day.
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