Pandemonium in raj Assembly, Oppn stage walkout

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Jaipur, Feb 28 (UNI) Rajasthan Assembly today witnessed noisy scenes, slogan shouting and dharna as Opposition Congress members expressing their unhappiness over the rejection of their request for a call attention motion staged a walkout from the house.

The bedlam, which lasted for half an hour, began during Zero Hour when Deputy Speaker Ram Narain Vishnoi rejected a request from Mr Mangla Ram Godhra of Congress for speaking on the issue of pendency of special category power connections.

Disappointed over the Chair's ruling, Mr Godhra stood up and repeated his demand for permission to raise the issue. He was supported by his other party colleagues. When the Chair disallowed them, the members trooped into the well and Mr Godhra sat on a dharna for a shortwhile.

This attracted strong objections from the Treasury Benches. Home Minister Gulab Chand Kataria and several others including some ministers were on their feet requesting the Chair to take action against "indisciplined" members who had "shown disrepect to the Chair's ruling".

Meanwhile, Leader of the Opposition Hemaram Chaudhary also supported Mr Godhra's request. This made no difference and subsequently the unhappy opposition members walked out of the House.

Mr Kataria took strong exception to the Opposition's act and demanded stern action against by the Chair. He said this was for the first time in the history of the house that a walk out was staged in protest against the Chair's ruling.

He said there might be differences and reasons for clashes between the Treasury Benches and the Opposition but all were supposed to respect and regard the Chair and its rulings.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Rajendra Singh Rathore, Government Chief Whip Mahavir Prasad Jain and Food and Civil Supply Minister Ghanshyam Tiwari urged the opposition and its Leader Mr Chaudhary to tender an apology for protesting against the Chair's ruling.

Senior Congress member Pradhyuman Singh and Congress chiefwhip Zuber Khan clarified that the walkout and dharna and protest by some members were not meant to show disrespect or disregard against the Chair but to express the government's apathy and inaction over the matter which was being raised by these members.

They said the opposition did not mean to disregard the house but the members are supposed to raise and express themselves over the issues of people's concern.

Deputy Speaker Mr Vishnoi ignored the Treasury Benches' demand for action against the opposition members but cautioned the Opposition to be careful in future and to stick to rules and conventions.


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