Bengaluru, Feb 5: Continuing its protest against the ban on VHP leader Praveen Togadia from entering the city, opposition BJP today staged a walkout from the Karnataka Legislative Assembly here.
When the House met for the day, BJP leaders entered the well of the House shouting slogans against the government, calling it 'dictatorial' and 'undemocratic'. Congress and JD(S) members objected to the protest, saying BJP was trying to disrupt proceedings following which an argument broke out between the MLAs.
As the situation turned chaotic, Speaker adjourned the House for ten minutes. When the House resumed, BJP leaders again entered the well of the House shouting slogans against the government. BJP leader R Ashoka, alleging government of discrimination, said, "when they have given permission to other events, why are they trying to stop this one?" He called the government's act of banning Togadia's entry as 'dictatorial' and 'undemocratic'.
Asking BJP MLAs to allow the House to function, Speaker Kagodu Thimmappa said, "You have showed your resentment both yesterday and now, government has also said what it wanted to, now allow the House to function and continue with the proceedings."
"Things should not exceed certain limit, please do not use the House for political reasons," he added. JD(S) leader Y S V Datta said the House is being used for political purposes instead of discussing public issues. House should be allowed to function, he said.
Responding to the Speaker's call, Opposition Leader Jagadish Shettar said, "maintaining law and order is the responsibility of government; by stopping Togadia's entry into the city, government is trying to curtail democratic rights." "We respect your (Speaker) request for smooth functioning of the House, but we are against the adamant attitude of this government. Hence we are staging a walkout," he said. Following the BJP's walkout, the House proceeded with the Question Hour.
Dubbing the Congress government as "anti-Hindu" and "anti-majority", BJP MLAs had yesterday raised the issue in the Assembly, leading to adjournment of the House repeatedly. Police had on Tuesday banned Togadia from entering the city from February 5 to 11 on grounds that his "provocative and inflammatory" speeches would have "grave" consequences and there was likelihood of breach of peace.