Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Nov 29:
With the opposition creating a ruckus demanding the resignation of the advocate general (AG) for his opinion on the issue of a denate on the chit fund scam in the Odisha Assembly and the ruling party matching it shout-for-shout, the House could not transact any business for the ninth day running today.
Not to be left behind, ruling BJD members also rushed into the well to protest against the Opposition’s action. As pandemonium prevailed in the House, the Speaker adjourned it till 3 PM.
The Question Hour could not be conducted for the eighth consecutive day today.
When the House reassembled at 3 pm, there was no let up in the pandemonium with Congress members attemting to climb on to the Speaker’s podium. The Speaker then adjourned the House again till 4 pm.
But things were no better when the House reconvened at 4 pm. With no hope of restoring order in the House, the Speaker finally adjourned the House till Monday.
Amid the din, however, the House adopted the supplementary debate of the Revenue department through the guillotine before the House was adjourned till Monday.
In a bid to restore order in the House, Speaker Niranjan Pujari has called an all-party meeting. But given the Opposition’s intrasigence, it is doubtful if anything would come out of it.
Both the Congress and the BJP have blamed the ruling party for not allowing the House to run and have submitted separate memorandums to the Governor SC Jamir at the Raj Bhawan
The Opposition has also targeted the advocate general for his opinion against any debates on the chit fund issue in the House stating that it is sub judice.
Leader of the Opposition Narasingh Mishra has alleged that Advocate General Suryaprasad Mishra had worked as a counsel for the Seashore Group, a key player in the chit fund scam, before becoming the AG and hence should have refrained from giving an opinion on the chit fund issue.
“Both propriety and law demanded that he should have desisted from giving an opinion on the issue because of his past association with it,” Mishra said.
“If the Speaker and the Chief Minister think that the 147 members of this House elected by the people to frame laws are fools and do not know anything and the House will run based on the opinion of a person who is not a member of the House, then they are sadly mistaken. What can be more shameful and unfortunate than this?” he asked while speaking to reporters today.
The BJP legislature party leader and Nuapada MLA Basant Panda too lambasted the government and the AG in similar terms.
“Lawyers should abide by moral responsibilities. No lawyer can practice without sticking to moral responsibilities bestowed on him. Even the Bar Council of India has prescribed rules for this and so has the Odisha Bar Association. The way the AG gave his advice considering us 147 elected members as fools and incompetent.and the way the honourable Speaker acted on his advice is condemnable and unfortunate,” Panda said.
A BJP delegation will meet President Pranab Mukharjee at 8.30 PM today to apprise him of the prevailing situation in the Odisha Assembly as the government here is trying to stifle the voice of the opposition, Panda added.
BJD MLA and spokesperson Samir Dash, however, defended the Speaker’s ruling saying; “Did the Opposition expect the AG to give the opinion it wanted? The speaker had sough his opinion and he gave his considered view, which should be accepted by everyone in the House.”
Meanwhile, BJP workers have gheraoed the house of Advocate General Suryaprasad Mishra at Ganesh Ghat area in Cuttack demanding his resignation.