BHUBANESWAR: Opposition Congress members created ruckus in the Assembly on Thursday protesting the absence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik during discussion of important issues.
Insisting on the presence of the Chief Minister in the Assembly during discussions, the Congress members stalled the business of the House forcing Deputy Speaker S Marndi to adjourn it for 22 minutes during the Zero Hour.
Marndi had to adjourn the House from 11.38 am till 12.00 pm after agitated Congress members rushed to the well and shouted slogans demanding the chair to give a direction to the Chief Minister to remain present during the discussion on a motion on Central negligence.
Opposition chief whip Tara Prasad Bahinitpati was seen trying to snatch the microphone from the Speaker’s table.
Raising the issue during Zero Hour, Bahinipati criticised the Chief Minister for his absence during the debate on a sensitive issue like drought and increasing incidents of farmers’ suicide on Wednesday.
Accusing the Chief Minister of being insensitive to the problems of the State, Bahinipati requested the Deputy Speaker to direct Naveen to be present during the discussion on ruling BJD sponsored motion on Central neglect to Odisha during natural calamities and reply to the debate.
Supporting the Congress, Rabi Naik of the BJP demanded the presence of the Chief Minister during the discussion on Central negligence towards the State. BJP members present in the House also protested the prolonged absence of the Chief Minister during business hours.
As the House reassembled at 12 pm, Leader of Opposition Narasingh Mishra said Naveen is not only the leader of a party but also the Chief Minister of the State. The people of the State are anxious to know his views on the alleged Central neglect to Odisha.
Objecting to the Chief Minister’s absence in the House during discussion on important issues without any pressing business, Mishra said the leader of the House is also not giving replies pertaining to the departments of which he is in charge.