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Saturday, January 22, 2022

Odisha Assembly adjourned for 7th straight day with no business undertaken

In the last seven days, the House witnessed protests, sloganeering, blocking of assembly gate, beating gongs and bells and sprinkling gangajal and cow dung for purification and the continued absence of the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

Written by Aishwarya Mohanty | Bhubaneswar |
December 9, 2021 7:43:55 am
The opposition has also been irate over the absence of CM Naveen Patnaik (File)

For the seventh consecutive day, the Odisha Legislative Assembly was adjourned with no significant business undertaken in the House from its commencement day. On Wednesday, the House was adjourned twice within four hours after deadlock over various issues between both the ruling Biju Janta Dal (BJD) and the BJP continued.

In the last seven days, the House witnessed protests, sloganeering, blocking of assembly gate, beating gongs and bells and sprinkling gangajal and cow dung for purification and the continued absence of the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. Both the BJP and the Congress has been demanding the ouster of Minister of Home for State Dibya Shankar Mishra for his alleged links to the prime accused in the Mamita Meher murder case.

“We are ready to discuss the issues in a democratic way, we have bills to be introduced, but the opposition has been resorting to theatrics and disturbing the decorum. How can we proceed with the sessions just by ourselves,” said Government Chief Whip Pramila Mallik.

The opposition has also been irate over the absence of the CM, who has addressed the House over Mishra’s issue via videoconferencing and assured a free and fair probe in the matter. Patnaik also said there was no proof against Mishra for his ouster from his post and the party. The BJP, however, has sent letters to the CM asking him to attend the assembly session in person and sack the minister.

“The CM had led the protests against the then government when a woman was raped in the city (1999 Anjana Mishra rape case), and the government eventually fell. Now, in the Kalahandi teacher’s murder case, he maintained a stoic silence and then has been shielding his own minister,” said BJP Chief Whip in assembly Mohan Majhi.

Congress MLA Narasingha Mishra said, “The CM has been in different districts for Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana smart card distribution programmes and hockey events, but not visited the assembly once after the pandemic.”

Responding to the pandemonium in the House and what actions he plans on taking, Speaker SN Patro said, “The entire House has been unruly with no exceptions. What actions can I take? Despite convening all party meetings twice, there has been no end to it.”

The session is likely to be curtailed and adjourned sine die after December 10 when the House is scheduled to introduce the Appropriation Bill.

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