Walkouts in MP Assy over power

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Bhopal, Mar 5 (UNI) The main opposition Congress today placed the Madhya Pradesh government in the dock over the power issue and staged two walkouts in the Assembly after being dissatisfied with Energy Minister Gaurishankar Shejwar's reply.

Mr Ramniwas Rawat (Cong) boycotted question hour during which opposition members objected to several points in Dr Shejwar's responses to supplementaries relating to generation and distribution.

The Congress members alleged that not a single megawatt additional capacity was created by the government during the more than four years of its tenure while the Minister claimed that more than 1,000 MW additional capacity was created either independently or through combined efforts.

Mr Rajendra Singh (Cong), who posed the query, accused the Minister of making a wrong statement, several members supported Mr Singh and began speaking at once. Speaker Ishwardas Rohani and Dr Shejwar objected saying that when ample opportunity was provided for posing a question the reply should be heard.

Despite that the members continued speaking at once and the Congress staged a walkout after about a ten minute-long heated exchange. Mr Ramlakhan Sharma (Communist Party of India-Marxist) followed suit.

Mr Rawat posed supplementaries to which Dr Shejwar wished to reply but the opposition members began intervening again.

Half-a-dozen members, including Mr Rawat, briefly trooped into the well. Sidelining the opposition members' objection, the Speaker said, ''it is not possible that the Minister will provide the answer that the members wish to hear.'' The members remained adamant, the Congress staged another walkout accompanied by Mr Sharma.


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