Stalemate in Orissa Assembly for third consecutive day

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Bhubaneswar, Aug 28 (UNI) The stalemate in Orissa Assembly continued for the third consecutive day today as the Opposition members stalled the proceedings of the House in protest against the deteriorating law and order situation in the state forcing the Chair to adjourn the House thrice till 1500 hours.

As soon as the House assembled for the day, Congress Deputy leader Narashingh Mishra, rising on a point of order, said the law and order situation was deteriorating all over the state in the aftermath of the murder of VHP leader Laxamananda Sarswati on Saturday in Kandhamal.

He said many people were killed, houses and places of worship attacked and torched.

He alleged that the Chief Minister, despite his party's persistent demand, was neither taking the Opposition into confidence nor constituting a peace committee to diffuse the tension.

Mr Mishra alleged that the ruling party members were creating communal violence in the state and cited how a close relative of a ruling party member was arrested on the charge of throwing bomb in Kendrapara.

He further said the Opposition did not feel that there was any law and order prevailing in the state and had decided not to cooperate in running the business of the House.

Soon after, the Congress members rushed to the well and sat on a dharna inside the well of the House. They were joined by members from NCP, CPI, CPI-M and Independent member Sambhunath Naik.

However, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Raghunath Mohanty said the House had already discussed the law and order situation for more than five hours on a motion moved by the Opposition and the Chief Minister had been apprising the House of the development every day.

The government, he said, had taken all steps to contain the violence. He appealed to the Opposition members to cooperate and participate in the proceedings and maintain the dignity of the House.

The Minister said yesterday the opposition members staged a walkout and reiterated that walkout was not a solution and appealed to Opposition members to participate in the discussion.

He also appealed to the Speaker to request the Opposition members to return to their seats. The Speaker did so but a determined Opposition did not pay heed to the appeal and continued their dharna inside the well.

Finding no other solution to put an end to the impasse, the Speaker adjourned the House for ten minutes at 1042 hours. The House reassembled after the adjournment but Mr Yogendra Behera, who was then on the Chair, again adjourned it till 1130 hours without transacting any business.

When the House met at 1130 hours, the Speaker tried to proceed with the business of the House but in vain. Sensing the mood of the Opposition and the uproarious scenes inside the well, he adjourned the House till 1500 hours without taking the Question Hour business.

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