HP Guv manhandled in Assembly complex, 5 Cong MLAs suspended

HP Guv manhandled in Assembly complex, 5 Cong MLAs suspended

Shimla: Himachal Pradesh Assembly Speaker Vipin Parmar on Friday suspended five Congress MLAs including Leader of Opposition Mukesh Agnihotri for the entire budget session for creating ruckus in the House and manhandling Governor Bandaru Dattatreya, later in the assembly complex.

MLAs suspended are Leader of the Opposition Agnihotri, Harshvardan Chauhan, Sunder Singh Thakur, Satpal Raizada and Vinay Kumar.

The development came immediately after minister for Parliamentary affairs Suresh Bhardwaj moved a motion in this regard following a high-voltage drama involving Congress MLAs, who tried to block movement of the Governor having come to the Assembly for delivering his customary address.

Earlier to this, Leader of Opposition Mukesh Agnihotri had also disrupted the Governor's address in the House terming it as a bundle of lies and having no reference to burning public issues like three farm bills, farmers protests, rising fuel prices and corruption during the Covid time.

Sensing the mood in the opposition benches, Governor hurriedly read his address selectively and left the House while the opposition MLAs moved to the entrance of the State Assembly building and sat at a dharna, kept raising slogans and blocked the way to his cavalcade.

When the Governor escorted by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur and Speaker Vipin Singh Parmar with minister for Parliamentary affairs Suresh Bhardwaj came to leave the assembly, Agnihotri with other MLAs stopped him raising slogans as why he hasn't read the whole address–a constitutional duty he had to perform.

The security personnel tried to give a safe passage to Governor to his official car but Agnihotri did not let him go as other MLAs started raising slogans with Chief Minister and Speaker finding themselves quite helpless though Bhardwaj and Deputy Speaker Hans Raj got into argument, and soon exchanging jostles and pushes.

The tempers went high with two ministers and Deputy Speaker apart from a few BJP MLAs also coming to the scene and trying to push the Congress protesters led from the front by Agnihotri and another senior MLA Harshvardan Chauhan.

Agnihotri declared that he will not let the Governor leave till the issues which the Opposition members wanted to raise answered and the full text of the Address was read out in the House.

The scuffle, sloganeering and Agnihotri bid failed as Deputy Speaker Hans Raj and two ministers Suresh Bhardwaj and Vipin Parmar used their muscle power with support of security officials facilitated the Governor to depart even as Agnihotri lied on the bonnet of the car.

Soon the House was convened by the Speaker Vipin Parmar and proceedings for suspension of the Congress MLA was undertaken in their absence.

Bhardwaj termed the action of the Congress MLAs and Agnihotri as a criminal act and physical attack on the Governor and his manhandling in full public view.

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