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BSP members disrupt U.P. budget session, stage walkout

Atiq Khan
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Samajwadi Party government has made only hollow promises in its 11-month-long rule: Opposition leader

Bahujan Samaj Party workers wave banners during the Governor's address in the Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Sabha in Lucknow on Thursday.— PHOTO: PTI
Bahujan Samaj Party workers wave banners during the Governor's address in the Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Sabha in Lucknow on Thursday.— PHOTO: PTI

The budget session of Uttar Pradesh legislature got off to a stormy start on Thursday, with Bahujan Samaj Party members creating a ruckus during Governor B.L. Joshi’s address to the joint sitting of the House.

As the din continued, Mr. Joshi was compelled to leave the House after rushing through the 92-page document, reading out just the opening and concluding parts. The opening proceedings of the budget session lasted barely four minutes.

The BSP MLAs, led by Leader of the Opposition Swamy Prasad Maurya, later staged a walkout when the House reassembled at 12.30 p.m. and Vidhan Sabha Speaker Mata Prasad Pandey rose to read out the Governor’s address (which is the convention).

Describing the Governor’s address as a “government document,” the Leader of the Opposition said only hollow promises had been made by the Samajwadi Party government in its 11-month-long rule.

The Bharatiya Janata Party was conspicuous by its absence as it had decided to boycott the Governor’s address.

Pandemonium started as soon as the Governor climbed the podium to read out his address. The BSP members were on their feet, shouting “ Rajyapal vaapas jao ” (“Governor go back”). Raising placards and banners and donning blue caps with slogans written on them, the BSP members stood up on their seats and climbed the writers’ desk.

They ignored the Governor’s plea to take their seats. Rashtriya Lok Dal MLAs also waved placards. The Congress MLAs continued standing, but kept mum.

In the midst of the disorder, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Mohammad Azam Khan said: “ BSP ke gundon ki sarkar chali gayi ” (“the government of BSP goondas has been thrown out of power.”) As the BSP members kept on creating disorder in the House, the Governor said that if they did not want to hear him he would cut short his address by reading the concluding part. So it was. When Mr. Joshi left, the House was adjourned at 11.04 a.m.

Sympathy

Referring to the stampede at the Allahabad railway station on February 10, the Governor said the government was very much perturbed and that its sympathies were with the victims’ families. A high-level inquiry had been instituted and financial assistance provided by the government to the next-of-kin of the deceased and the injured persons. Measures were put in place to ensure that the government’s promises during the Assembly elections were given a concrete shape. The Governor mentioned the unemployment dole, Kanya Vidya Dhan and laptops and computer tablets schemes and the ‘Hamari Beti, Uska Kal’ scheme.

The State had lagged behind in development in the last five years (of BSP rule). Steps were taken for the creation of a congenial industrial climate that would attract maximum capital investment. The government was determined to raise the socio-economic status of farmers. An atmosphere of public welfare was created, thanks to well-thought-out policies, he said.

The House will reassemble on February 18 and the budget for the fiscal 2013-14 will be presented by Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, who also holds the Finance portfolio, on February 19.

Meanwhile, flaying the Samajwadi Party government for the Kumbh Mela stampede, the BSP sought the Chief Minister’s resignation on grounds of morality and a judicial inquiry into the incident. Senior party leader Naseemuddin Siddiqui wondered how the government could administer the State when it failed to manage the Kumbh Mela.

Mr. Maurya said the inquiry instituted by the government was eyewash.


  • The Bharatiya Janata Party boycotted the Governor’s address to the joint sitting

  • BSP members raised placards and shouted slogans seeking withdrawal of Governor



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