BHUBANESWAR: Marred by continuous disruption over the Mamita Meher murder case, the winter session of the Assembly was adjourned 20 days ahead of schedule on Friday.
This was for the first time that question hour could not be taken up even for a single day during the nine-day session as the protesting Opposition MLAs created ruckus inside the House. Besides, no adjournment or calling attention motion could be discussed as the BJP and Congress MLAs invented new ways to create pandemonium demanding the ouster of Minister of State for Home Dibya Shankar Mishra over the issue.
Assembly started on a noisy note on Friday as the Opposition members continued with the protest in the well of the House holding placards and beating gongs to press for their demands. Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro adjourned the proceedings twice - first till 11.30 am and then up to 4 pm - as the Opposition members persisted with their demand. An all party meeting convened by the Speaker failed to end the stalemate.
The Appropriation Bill for supplementary budget was passed amidst the din following which the Speaker adjourned the House indefinitely. The winter session which commenced on December 1, was scheduled to end on December 31. Government Chief Whip Pramila Mallik brought the motion to adjourn the House stating that there were no pending business.
The BJP and Congress, however, criticised the premature adjournment of the House describing the government as ‘escapist’. The BJP MLAs sat on a dharna in front of the Assembly protesting the decision.
Opposition chief whip Mohan Majhi said that the BJP wanted Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to attend the House and dismiss Minister of State for Home Dibyashankar Mishra for his alleged link with the main accused in the Mamita Meher case. “The Chief Minister can move all over Odisha to distribute BSKY cards, but cannot attend the Assembly to face the Opposition,” he said.
The Congress MLAs also sat on a dharna in front the Gandhi statue on the Assembly premises in protest against the early end to the House.