Published: Thu, March 15, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Ruckus in Gujarat Assembly as Congress, BJP exchange blows

Ruckus in Gujarat Assembly as Congress, BJP exchange blows

On being denied permission, Der and Maadam started walking towards the well of the House.

Speaker Trivedi then suspended both the leaders, which enraged the Opposition party's Pratap Dudhat. At this point there was an exchange of words between Pratap Dudhat and BJP MLA Jagdish Panchal which instigated the former to grab a microphone and hurl it at Panchal.

He urged the speaker as well as the ruling party members to show a "big heart", following which Trivedi revoked the suspension of all the Congress MLAs, including Thumar.

A large number of lawmakers gathered at the centre of the house and rivals jostled each other before the Speaker adjourned the proceedings. Maadam and Der were escorted out by marshals, but Der re-entered the House through another gate and struck Panchal. Der was later escorted out of the House. "In fact, outside the House, Congress legislator Baldev Thakor threatened to break my legs".

BJP has registered an official complaint with the Assembly Speaker seeking disciplinary action against the Congress MLA for the assault.

"This is a shameful incident which has never happened in the history of Gujarat assembly". His proposal was supported by senior minister Bhupendrasinh Chudasama. "I do not even know what I was being suspended for", he said. Luckily, Panchal was not hurt in the attack.

After the attack on Panchal, the speaker suspended Dudhat for the rest of the Budget Session.

According to the ruling, the suspended legislators would not be allowed to enter the Assembly premises for the term of suspension. "I had only asked him (Dudhat) to sit down", responded Panchal.

However, Dudhat said: "The BJP is trying to shift the people's attention from public issues like the death of children in Asaram Ashram".

Rejecting the Opposition's arguments, Speaker Trivedi put the motion to vote. This led to a verbal duel between some BJP and Congress legislators. Soon, other Congress MLAs also started questioning the Speaker, and chaos prevailed in the House.

When the House re-assembled in the afternoon, Chavda tendered an apology on behalf of the Congress legislators. "However, we will not allow them to succeed", he said.

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