THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Even as an apparently jubilant chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan took the very first opportunity on Thursday to score high on SNC Lavalin and a High Court single bench discharging him from the list of accused in the case the other day, while also presenting the achievements of his one-and-half-year-old government, the Opposition stood ground and fired back on the last day of the Assembly session. Pinarayi did not care to address the notice for an adjournment motion connected with the UDF stir and demand for a discussion on the four-day-old satyagraha of five MLAs inside the Assembly, demanding the resignation of Health Minister K K Shylaja in the wake of repeated adverse court observations, as he was seemingly carried away by the decisive court verdict in his favour. UDF legislators, who kept protesting in the Well of the House during the question hour, later boycotted the proceedings and subsequently, KC(M) MLAs and BJP’s O Rajagopal walked out in protest.
On the notice for the motion given by K C Joseph (Cong), the chief minister insisted at the outset that there was no need for the minister to quit over the HC observations in the judgment passed on the member appointments of the State Child Rights Commission. He took the court strictures lightly and maintained that T B Suresh, on whose appointment all the hue and cry was going on, had no criminal cases against him but involved only in cases related to ‘social issues’,and the court has not nullified the appointments.The Chief Minister stuck to his guns and turned down the demand for Shylaja’s resignation,but only after devoting himself for around half-an-hour with assertions in the SNC Lavalin case. The entire House remained in rapt attention to his words. He underscored that he had no apprehensions in the past or on even on the day of judgment, that truth will prevail.
He said the government cannot be termed as a Communist rule, but only a dispensation inclusive of communists and constrained to function within the framework of the Centre and the Constitution. “But the LDF government is trying to deliver good to the people within these limitations,” he claimed.
Criticising the Chief Minister for not addressing the adjournment motion notice, Opposition Leader Ramesh Chennithala said the judgment on SCRC appointments clearly states misuse of power by minister Shylaja. It has struck down the appointment of two members including T B Suresh,citing the police report that he was involved in 12 criminal cases, he said.
Crushing the claims of Pinarayi that his government stands by the poor and sidelined sections, Ramesh said the High Court chief justice sorted out the self-financing medical admissions and fee issue in a single day, when the government miserably failed to set the record straight even after getting 4-5 months for it.
On the Lavalin case, the Opposition leader said the case has been reopened now .The final outcome of the Jayalalithaa and Lalu Prasad Yadav corruption cases, which were disposed by the trial court and dealt by the apex court later, is relevant, he said announcing the boycott.