Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Mar 10:
The contentious omissions and commissions in the Odisha Police Bill, 2015 is all set to dominate proceedings when the Odisha Assembly begins the second leg of the ongoing budget session tomorrow after a break of 17 days.
The session is likely to be stormy as the Opposition and the ruling BJD have already entered into a duel of words on certain provisions of the Bill.
According to the Opposition, the Bill has not been prepared in accordance with the directives of the Supreme Court. Congress, the main opposition party in the state Assembly, has alleged that though there is provision for constitution of a security commission in the Bill, there is no provision for inclusion of the Leader of Opposition in it.
The Congress said while the apex court had directed adoption of one of the two models – the Ribeiro Committee and the Sorabjee Committee – recommended by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), neither of the models has been taken into consideration by the state government in formulating the Bill.
“The state government has ignored the recommendations of the three commissions. In its present form, the Bill that has been introduced in the State Assembly is in violation of the directives of the Supreme Court. Naveen Babu perhaps thinks he is above the Supreme Court. The Odisha Assembly cannot pass any Bill in violation of Supreme Court directives,” said Narasingha Mishra. Leader of the Opposition.
The BJP, on the other hand, has said even if the Bill is passed by the Assembly, the party will challenge it in the appropriate court. The party said it is also against certain other provisions in the Bill.
“They have not taken the Leader of the Opposition in that committee in the Bill. They have kept several provisions in the Bill which are against the recommendations of the Ribeiro and Sorabjee Committees. The government is always in a hurry to get Bills passed through its brute majority in the House. It never wants any debate on them. We will challenge it in the court of law,” said BJP state unit president and Patnagarh MLA KV Singhdeo.
However, the BJD has said that the Opposition can move amendments to the Bill and it can be debated in the House.
“If there are any deviations in the Bill as they are claiming, it can be discussed on the floor of the House. They can move amendments. It can be debated and amendments can be brought. There is ample scope for discussion in the House,” said BJD spokesperson and member from Badchana Amar Prasad Satpathy.
The Opposition has pointed out that the Model Police Act-2006 prepared by the Central government after the Supreme Court directive, has a provision for constitution of a State Police Board, which will be headed by the Home Minister and Leader of the Opposition with other members in it, within six months of bringing the new police bill. However, this provision of the model police bill 2006 has found no place in the Odisha Police Bill, 2015.