Facing flak from the Opposition, the Rajasthan government on Tuesday referred The Criminal Laws Bill to a select committee of the assembly. The bill was tabled in the assembly amid Opposition protests yesterday over its controversial amendments which seek to bar law enforcement authorities from probing magistrates and public servants without prior sanction. It also prohibits the media from reporting on the accusation against such a person until the prosecution gets the go-ahead from the sanctioning authority, which may take up to six months.
During today’s Question Hour, senior minister Rajendra Rathore informed the House that Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje had held a meeting with her ministers last night to discuss the bill and that the home minister would apprise the House of the development. The Indian Express first reported that Raje asked them to have a “rethink” on the Bill. Ministers Gulab Chand Kataria, Rajendra Rathore, Arun Chaturvedi, Yunus Khan and state BJP president Ashok Parnami were present at the meeting.
The Opposition protests continued for the second day in a row. Opposition MLAs rushed into the Well of the House demanding the government to withdraw the bill. Home Minister Gulabchand Kataria said the government would consider the suggestions put forward by the members.
He then moved a proposal to refer it to the select committee. The proposal was passed by the Assembly. The select committee has been asked to submit its report in the next session.
Earlier today, BJP MLA Ghanshyam Tiwari protested when he was not allowed to raise a point of order. He objected to Speaker Kailash Meghwal giving permission to the home minister for giving his statement during the Question Hour.
After the proposal for referring of the bill to the select committee was passed, the Speaker called for listed questions but the Congress members raised the issue of farm distress.
Congress Deputy Whip Govind Singh Dotasara said the government was not serious on the issues of farmers and demanded agriculture loan waiver.
Amid continued protest and disruption during the Question Hour, the Speaker adjourned the House till 1 pm.
In the 200-member Rajasthan Assembly, BJP has 160 MLAs while the Congress has 24 members.
with PTI inputs