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Trinamool Congress boycotts budget session

Written by: Staff
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Kolkata, July 3 (UNI) In accordance with its previous announcement the opposition All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) today boycotted the budget discussion of the West Bengal Assembly despite the speaker's assurance to allot it increased time for discussion.

At the end of the first session of the House, Speaker Hasim Abdul Halim made an announcement allocating provisional status of opposition to the AITC on conditional basis.

He said the AITC had been accorded opposition status with its MLA Partho Chatterjee becoming the leader of opposition provided the party was able to increase its number of seats to 30 from 29 by winning the Bongaon by-election later this year. Besides, it should agree to the proposal of getting 45 per cent time for discussion with remaining 55 per cent being allocated to the ruling parties.

Mr Chatterjee, while speaking to reporters later, refused to accept the speaker's proposal and said the condition was an insult to the opposition bench.

''We are not going to accept such conditional proposal and have decided to boycott the budget discussion till our demands for allocation of 50 per cent time with present strength,'' Mr Chatterjee said.

He said the party would discuss the issues with AITC chief Mamata Banerjee and take a final decision in this regard and announce it on the floor of the House tomorrow.

As a result the five-hour discussion on the opening day of the budget discussion started this afternoon with only ruling party members and those of the Congress being present.

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