BHUBANESWAR: BJP members on Monday created ruckus in the Assembly alleging that questions for discussion are being selected arbitrarily and not by lottery, leading the Speaker to adjourn the House thrice.However, Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro denied allegations by the BJP and announced that now onward MLAs will be informed about the timing of the lottery through SMS. He said important questions submitted by the legislators are generally discussed in the House while written replies are given by ministers to other queries. Questions for discussion are selected by lottery, he added.
The BJP MLAs, however, alleged that major issues are not being discussed due to lack of a lottery system and questions are listed keeping an eye on the comfort of the Government. The issue was raised by Leader of the Opposition Pradipta Kumar Naik as soon as the House assembled for the question hour. Soon after other BJP members rushed to the well demanding that questions for discussion be chosen by lottery.
Unable to run the House, the Speaker had to adjourn it initially for an hour and later twice - for 10 minutes and five minutes. Normalcy returned to the House after Patro announced that the timing of the lottery would be informed to MLAs via SMS. “It (lottery) is done in the presence of any one MLA. When there is no MLA present, the Speakers does it. Henceforth, MLAs will be sent SMS before the lottery,” he said.
Opposition chief whip Mohan Majhi, however, alleged outside the House that neither the Speaker nor the Assembly Secretary are implementing the lottery system.
Congress Legislature Party leader Narasingha Mishra said it is not the duty of the Assembly Secretary or any other official to decide which question is to be discussed in the House.
“As per rules, questions will be selected through a lottery system and the member concerned, who will raise the question, has to remain present in the House. But if this procedure is not carried out, it is a matter of grave concern,” he told mediapersons.