Amid ruckus in the Assembly, the opposition’s no confidence motion against the SAD-BJP government fell flat on Monday during the ongoing Monsoon Session of Punjab Vidhan Sabha. As the motion was rejected by the House through voting conducted by Speaker Charanjit Singh Atwal, Congress MLAs later held a mock Assembly after the House was adjourned and vent their anger against the ruling alliance.
In the mock Assembly, the Congress party made Ashwani Sekhri Speaker, Gurkirat Kotli as dummy Chief Minister and Amarinder Singh Raja Warring as the Deputy Chief Minister. Some of the Congress MLAs were made to sit on the chairs of Vidhan Sabha’s clerical staff to record the proceedings.
The motion was brought by the Leader of Opposition Charanjit Singh Channi four days back, which was admitted by the Speaker and put to debate on Monday. Following the schedule after the legislative business of the day, Speaker Atwal invited the Congress party MLAs to start their speech.
To ensure the Speaker grants them least two hours’ time to keep their views, the Congress party staged demonstration in the House and finally when the Speaker agreed, the Leader of Opposition Charanjit Singh Channi launched a scathing attack on the ruling alliance, which was laced with some ‘derogatory words’ directed at Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal.
The Akali Dal-BJP MLAs took strong exception to his words and sought an apology from Channi. As Channi remained adamant, the SAD-BJP alliance and the Congress MLAs took on one another, which led to total chaos in the Vidhan Sabha. They indulged in sloganeering against one another. Meanwhile, Speaker Atwal invited Iqbal Singh Jhunda to chair the proceedings of the House.
As Jhunda, following the party’s resolution, was wearing the SAD badge on his white kurta, the Congress MLA Gurkirat Singh Kotli raised the objection and rallying behind him, the whole of Congress party demanded Jhunda to either vacate the seat or remove the badge while sitting on the Speaker’s chair. Some of the Congress MLAs, while staging protest, even attempted to breach the security cordon and jostled with the watch and ward staff, including females to reach the Speaker’s chair.
SPEAKER COMES TO JHUNDA’S RESCUE
Failed to manage the vociferous Congress MLAs, Jhunda had to call the Speaker Atwal for his rescue. With Atwal on the chair, the CLP leader Charanjit Singh Channi re-started his speech but the SAD MLAs then announced to keep the house stalled until Channi tenders apology for his words. Speaker then invited SAD MLA Gurpartap Singh Wadala to chair the House’s proceedings.
WADALA TOO FAILS TO PERFORM
The Congress MLAs, on seeing Wadala also wearing the same SAD badge, urged him to remove it but Wadala taking stand on the issue made it clear that he won’t remove it at any cost. As the Congress MLAs were also adamant for not allowing the House to function, the Speaker had to come back again to put things in order.
VISIBLY UPSET SPEAKER GOES FOR VOTING
This time, a visibly upset Speaker declared that ‘despite all given chances the Congress seems not willing to start its address on the motion’ and called for voting on the motion. Without giving much time to legislators, the Speaker declared that the motion defeated. Though the treasury benches welcomed the decision and left the House immediately after the Speaker adjourned the House till Wednesday, the Congress MLAs termed it as an act of cheating and held a mock session of Assembly.
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