RJD MLC's impudence in Bihar Legislative Council causes CM Nitish Kumar to lose cool
Patna, Mar 08: An RJD MLC's attempt to ask an out-of-turn question inside the Bihar Legislative Council on Monday caused Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, also a member of the House, to momentarily shed his famed composure and react in anger.
The leader of the House rose in his seat to reprimand MLC Subodh Kumar. A starred question was raised by fellow RJD legislator Mohd Farooq and the reply by Rural Works Minister Jayant Raj apparently did not satisfy the opposition.
Farooq thereafter raised a supplementary query and the minister rose again to reply when Subodh Kumar stood up and began hurling questions from his side. The chief minister intervened at this stage and said, "You must wait for your turn when another member has raised a question and the reply is being given."
The MLC, who was visibly disconcerted, attempted to stick to his guns, but the chief minister told him firmly, "You please sit down, first learn the rules." He also turned towards senior opposition legislators and said, "Why do you not impart your knowledge to these people."
The chief minister thereafter began addressing the chair, pointing out the impropriety of the RJD legislator, who is in his 30s. The young MLC tried to salvage some pride by insisting he was merely asking a "poorak prashn" (supplementary question).
The septuagenarian snapped, "Will you interrupt me while I am speaking? Will you not listen? Is this the way to conduct yourself?" The House was stunned into silence as the chief minister uttered these words on top of his voice, before resuming normal tone and explaining to the member that even if he had a supplementary question, he should have brought it to the notice of the Chair and raised it only once permission for the same was granted.
These are rules, which you must learn and scrupulously follow. I have no objection to anybody asking questions. But this must be in order," the chief minister said before taking his seat.
Chafed by the dressing down, Subodh Kumar whined, "I have respect for the chief minister but what I did is not without precedent. I wonder what was so amiss with my doing something even members of the treasury benches do."
Rural Development Minister Shravan Kumar, who held the parliamentary affairs portfolio in the previous government, rose to reiterate that the RJD MLC's behaviour was inappropriate.
"Any number of supplementary questions can be raised. But it cannot be acceptable that one member has raised a question and even before its reply is over, another legislator starts blurting out his own queries," Shravan Kumar said.