SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Council today witnessed a ruckus over Chairman Anayat Ali's decision to drop a resolution condemning the presence of the Chinese army in Gilgit-Baltistan in Pakistan from the proceedings of the house.
As soon as the House met this morning, BJP MLC Ramesh Arora raised the issue of his resolution being dropped and sought to know under what rules it had been done. He was soon joined by his party colleagues and also the members of opposition Congress and National Conference (NC).
Law Minister Abdul Haq Khan intervened, saying the powers of the Chairman cannot be questioned. "The Chairman has unlimited powers and he can remove it (the resolution)," Khan said. The members, however, continued to disrupt the Question Hour despite the Chairman's repeated pleas to not waste the time of the House.
However, the members did not budge and continued to demand answers from the Chair and the government. Defending the Chairman, Khan said, discussing foreign affairs and defence-related issues was not in the domain of the Legislative Council.
"How can we discuss foreign and defence affairs here? It is not in our domain to discuss such affairs," Khan said.
There was calm for some time after the Chairman asked the members to let the Question Hour function and, following its conclusion, a discussion could be taken up on the issue. After the Question Hour ended, the uproar resumed.
Arora and Congress legislator Ghulam Nabi Monga said, it was against the rules to omit a listed resolution. The minister, however, intervened, saying the resolution was removed from the agenda on Saturday and this was mentioned in today's bulletin.
Khan also invoked House rules, saying only those resolutions could be submitted in the House which are of general public interest.
He said, the issue of Chinese army's presence in Gilgit-Baltistan is the concern of the Ministry of External Affairs and Ministry of Defence and urged the members to refrain from commenting on such sensitive issues.
Arora said, through his resolution, he wanted the House to seek Centre's intervention in the issue of Chinese presence in Gilgit-Baltistan which he said are "integral parts of Jammu and Kashmir and India".
However, the government and the Chairman rejected the demand and the resolution was not taken up.