Free for all in Orissa Assembly, House adjourned till Mar 29

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Bhubaneswar, Mar 27 (UNI) A deadlock in Orissa Assembly over the 'sexual harassment' by Speaker Maheswar Mohanty to a suspended lady Marshal of the House, virtually turned into a free for all this afternoon as treasury bench and Opposition members clashed inside the well.

In the unprecedented pandemonium and scuffle that continued for nearly ten minutes, Chairman Bikram Aaruk escorted by some lady legislators of the treasury bench, rushed to the podium to conduct the business and adjourned the House till March 29 at 1030 hours.

Within minutes, the Chairman asked the Government Chief Whip to move a motion to suspend the rules 13 of the procedure of Conduct of the Business of the House for today as the house could not be assembled due to the obstruction by the Opposition members on the podium.

The motion was soon adopted by voice vote and the Chairman announced the House adjourned till 1030 hours of March 29 stating that the demands of Grants for today and tomorrow would be taken up in guillotine.

The Opposition Congress strongly condemned the action of the Treasury bench members and announced that they would continue the democratic method to press for their demands for the resignation of the Speaker and an impartial inquiry into the alleged sexual harassment levelled against Mr Mohanty.

While the House was plunged into a constitutional crisis in the morning with the entire Opposition Congress members occupying the podium and raising slogans against the Speaker demanding his resignation, suspended Assistant Marshal Gayatri Panda filed a complaint with the Mahila police station against the Speaker for alleged sexual harrasment.

State Women Congress President Asima Mahananda, along with All India Democratic Women Association (AIDWA) Secretary Pushpa Das, submitted the complaint on behalf of the lady Marshal to Deputy Commissioner of Police B N Guru at the Mahila police station in the city.

The complaint is yet to be registered as an FIR in the police station.

However, a station diary entry has been made and the authenticity of the complaint is being verified,police said.

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