BJP stages walkout in WB Assembly after speaker objects to Adhikari's Nandigram remarks

·3-min read

Kolkata, Jul 6 (PTI) The BJP on Tuesday walked out of the West Bengal Assembly after Speaker Biman Bandyopadhyay objected to certain remarks made by Leader of Opposition Suvendu Adhikari on Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's poll defeat in Nandigram.

Adhikari outsmarted Banerjee by 1,956 votes in Nandigram during the state elections held earlier in the year.

The TMC supremo, however, has moved the court challenging the poll results.

Nearly 30 minutes before the House took a lunch break, the opposition leader, during a discussion on the governor's inaugural address, raised the matter of Nandigram election to take a dig at Banerjee, drawing flak from the treasury bench.

The speaker, on his part, requested Adhikari to refrain from commenting on a matter that was subjudice.

The Leader of the Opposition, however, continued with his tirade against the CM, prompting the speaker to warn him a second time.

Adhikari, along with other BJP MLAs, subsequently walked out of the House.

Earlier in the day, TMC's Naihati MLA Partha Bhowmik, in a veiled attack on Adhikari, said that 'another Mirzafar after 1757 battle of Plassey had conspired to hand over Bengal to outsiders', as the ruling party members thumped their desk in approval.

Adhikari, once a TMC heavyweight, had switched over to the BJP ahead of the assembly polls.

The TMC, during election rallies, often referred to the saffron camp as a 'party of outsiders' as central leaders from Delhi led the poll campaigns in the state.

'Just like 'Didi ke Bolo' (Tell the elder sister -- helpline for redressing grievances), there should also be a 'baba k bolo' (Tell Dad) initiative for any query on anti- defection law,' the Naihati MLA said, apparently referring to the leader of opposition's father Sisir Adhikari, who was elected as TMC MP from Kanthi but later shifted allegiance to the saffron party.

The BJP has been demanding the resignation of MLA Mukul Roy, who won the April-May election on a BJP ticket and defected to the ruling party last month.

The Mamata Banerjee-led camp, in response, asked MP Sisir Adhikari to show the way.

Bhowmik's caustic statement was greeted with protests by the BJP, following which the speaker said he will expunge the comments that he deemed inappropriate after going through the proceedings.

Mihir Goswami, another BJP MLA, alleged during the Assembly session, that 'this government peddled falsehood in the governor's address and suppressed COVID-related data'.

TMC's Snehasis Chakraborty claimed that the BJP was 'spreading canards' after being rejected by the people of the state.

The treasury and the opposition benches also exchanged barbs over issues such as post-poll violence and safety of women in the Assembly, before the BJP staged a walkout.

The speaker rued that the saffron party members, in spite of his attempts to accommodate the views of the opposition bench, walked out of the House.

Slamming the BJP, TMC leader of House Partha Chatterjee said 'We condemn the way the BJP MLAs walked out of the House. Also, it is not right to challenge the CM and her party's decisions,' he said.

Adhikari later told reporters, 'If I am not allowed to speak in the Assembly despite being elected by the people of Nandigram, what is the point of remaining in the House?' PTI SUS RMS RMS

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