Kerala House disrupted as UDF ups protest over Sabarimala

Speaker told the agitating MLAs that the government had made its stance clear with regards to Section 144 and dharna hence the House should not be disrupted. 

Published: 08th December 2018 04:43 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th December 2018 04:43 AM   |  A+A-

Ramesh Chennithala

Kerala Opposition Leader Ramesh Chennithala (File | EPS)

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: After two days of calm, vociferous protest rocked Assembly on Friday. The UDF legislators decision to up the ante against the government for not revoking the prohibitory order at Sabarimala and failing to ensure basic facilities for pilgrims, prompted Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan to go for an early adjournment of the house only 17 minutes into the business. 

At the start of the Question Hour, the opposition legislators led by Ramesh Chennithala entered the House raising slogans. UDF MLAs trooped in to the well of the House armed with placards and black banners urging the government to scrap the prohibitory order at Sabarimala immediately. They also railed against the government for not providing enough facilities for the Ayyappa devotees at Sabarimala. 

Assembled in front of the speaker’s podium, they displayed a combative mood angered by the government’s stance not to budge before the opposition camp’s call for holding talks with three UDF MLAs - V S Sivakumar, Parakkal Abdulla and N Jayaraj - who have been staging a dharna in front of the house. Though the speaker requested them to return to their chairs and let the business go on as usual, the call went unheeded. 

Speaker told the agitating MLAs that the government had made its stance clear with regards to Section 144 and dharna hence the House should not be disrupted. 

“Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala had ensured the opposition MLAs will cooperate to run the House smoothly. Chennithala had given a submission on the same topic,” he said. Nevertheless, these words failed to bring the House back in order. With the pandemonium persisting, the speaker called off the day’s proceedings. 

Later, addressing the media Chennithala alleged the government had no interest in holding talks with agitating MLAs and added the MLAs will continue with their protest. 

“The UDF had requested the speaker to resolve MLAs dharna. The speaker took efforts for that but the government was adamant and unwilling,” said Chennithala.

The Opposition leader said there was no surprise in the High Court upholding the prohibitory order because the law enforcement agencies had submitted reports justifying the need for it. 

He added that it was high time the government had sent a message that peace is prevailing in Sabarimala so that more devotees would come to the shrine and Sabarimala returns to normalcy. 

He also condemned the government for approaching the Supreme Court against the three-member panel appointed by the High Court and said the commission has pointed out the lack of facilities at Pampa and Triveni.

CM rejects demand to withdraw ‘Thamasoma Jyothirgamaya’

T’Puram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has rejected the demand to withdraw the booklet ‘Thamasoma Jyothirgamaya’ brought out by the Information and Public Relations Department. In response to the submission from Opposition leader Ramesh Chennithala, the CM said currently there is no situation to withdraw the booklet.

The booklet was brought out in connection with the 82nd anniversary of the Temple Entry Proclamation. “The booklet will inspire the new generation about learning the state’s renaissance movement. There are many social reformers who have contributed to the renaissance movement. The state respects their contributions. However, elaborate description about these social reformers and incidents was not part of the purpose for bringing out the book. Therefore there is no reason to withdraw book,” he said.

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