Two Odisha BJP MLAs 'throw' pulses at Speaker in Assembly; suspended till end of session

Leader of Opposition Jaynarayan Mishra alleged that the Speaker was not neutral and tilted towards the ruling party.

Published: 28th September 2023 09:12 PM  |   Last Updated: 28th September 2023 09:12 PM   |  A+A-

Odisha Legislative Assembly

Odisha Legislative Assembly. Image used for representational purpose


BHUBANESWAR: Two BJP MLAs, including opposition chief whip Mohan Majhi, were suspended from the Odisha Assembly till the end of the current session for allegedly throwing 'daal' (pulses) at Speaker Pramila Mallik's podium on Thursday.

The other BJP lawmaker who was suspended is Mukesh Mahaling. Majhi rejected the allegation and claimed that he had not thrown 'daal' at the Speaker's podium.

He, however, said the BJP members had brought some 'daal' to the House for gifting it to Speaker Pramila Mallik. Speaker Mallik said the decision to suspend the two MLAs was taken as per the rules of the House.

On denial of the charge by Majhi, the Speaker said, "I do not know what he says. They have been suspended till the end of the ongoing session."

 The session is scheduled to end on October 4. Senior Biju Janata Dal leader Pramila Mallik was on September 22 elected unopposed as the Speaker of the Assembly, becoming the first woman in the state to occupy the post.

"The action against me is totally unjustified as I did not throw 'daal' at the Speaker's podium. The allegation against me is completely motivated. The Speaker suspended me without examining the CCTV footage," Majhi told reporters.

Majhi also challenged the Speaker and the ruling party to prove the allegation against him. The opposition chief whip alleged that he was targeted by the government because he put the administration in a tight spot by placing fact-based evidence.

The other suspended BJP MLA, Mukesh Mahaling, said, "I did not throw 'daal' at the Speaker's podium. We brought the 'daal' to gift it to the Speaker as she is fond of pulses."

Mahaling alleged that Mallik, as the former women and child development (WCD) minister, was entangled in a 'daal' scam, and "we brought the pulses to gift it to her".

The BJP members brought the pulses to the House in a polythene bag to draw the attention of the Speaker whom they accused of not being impartial while running the House. Earlier in the day, ruckus started following the remark of a ruling BJD MLA, who during the Zero Hour, had urged the opposition members to come to the House with good "mental health".

The statement was made by Nayagarh MLA Arun Kumar Sahoo, who came down heavily on the leader of the opposition (LoP), Jaynarayan Mishra of BJP, and Congress Legislature Party leader Narasingha Mishra after the opposition targeted Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik's private secretary without taking the officer's name.

Sahoo also said there seemed to be some "mental health disorder" and requested all to come to the House in good mental health condition.

Protesting the words used by the BJD lawmaker, the opposition BJP members trooped into the well of the House and demanded immediate expunge of the words "mental health disorder" from the assembly record. Speaker Mallik said she was examining the matter.

The House was adjourned several times in the afternoon as the BJP members were shouting, demanding that those words be expunged.

Leader of Opposition Jaynarayan Mishra alleged that the Speaker was not neutral and tilted towards the ruling party.

"Though the Speaker immediately expunged two words uttered by me in the House earlier in the day, she did not act against the BJD MLA's words like mental health disorder," the BJP leader said.

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