Kerala Assembly session begins on stormy note

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Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 5: The Kerala Assembly's budget session began on a stormy note on Friday as the LDF raised slogans and held up placards against the Congress-led UDF government, prompting Governor P Sathasivam to ask them to "sit quietly or leave".

As soon as the governor began his customary address at the beginning of the session, Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan stood up and said the government was 'neck deep' in corruption.

Protests in Kerala Assembly

The veteran CPI(M) leader wanted the governor to intervene in the matter amidst the row in the state over the alleged bar and solar scams. Reacting to that, the governor said, "You have raised your democratic protest. You are opposing this government. That is enough. You should allow me to do my constitutional duty. I am noting all your objections."

As the governor continued with his address, opposition members were up on their feet, holding up placards and banners seeking the resignation of Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and other ministers over corruption allegations.

As Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, the deputy leader of CPI(M) in the House, stood up, the governor said, "Mr Balakrishnan, this may happen to you also. If you have a right to protest, I am bound by the Constitution to deliver the address... better sit quietly or leave the House.

"I am aware (your) protest is not against me but the government. The entire nation is watching you. People are noting your objections. You have made your point and I have also noted it." But the protesting LDF members thereafter trooped out of the House.

The opposition members raised slogans and held up banners saying, "Don't want tainted ministry's policy." The 14-day sitting is politically significant as this is the last session of the 13th Kerala Assembly before the state goes to polls later this year.

PTI

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