Hry assembly secretariat to lodge FIR against Pb MLAs for ‘misbehaving’ with Khattar

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Chandigarh, Mar 12 (PTI) The Haryana Vidhan Sabha secretariat on Friday decided to lodge an FIR against a group of Punjab MLAs for allegedly misbehaving with Haryana Chief Minister M L Khattar outside the state assembly hall two days ago.

The decision was taken in a meeting chaired by Haryana assembly Speaker Gian Chand Gupta with state Home Secretary Rajeev Arora and police chief Manoj Yadava, besides other senior government and assembly officials, attending it.

In the meeting, it was also decided to take action against the police officials and security personnel deployed for Khattar’s security but found wanting in the discharge of their duty, an official said.

The incident over which the Haryana assembly secretariat lodge the FIR pertains to an incident on Wednesday when a group of Shiromani Akali Dal MLAs from Punjab had allegedly accosted the Haryana CM and had demanded passage of a resolution by the Haryana assembly against the three central laws on agricultural reform.

While accosting Khattar, the SAD MLAs had also allegedly misbehaved with him, the official said.

The incident would be probed by a joint team of the Haryana and Chandigarh officials, a Haryana assembly secretariat statement said.

The matter will also be taken up in Haryana Assembly on Monday, Gupta told the meeting, while pointing out that the Punjab legislators had behaved inappropriately.

Talking to reporters after presenting the budget in the state assembly here on Friday, Khattar said he talked to Shiromani Akali Dal chief Sukhbir Singh Badal too regarding the incident.

“Sukhbir Badal said he was not aware of the incident and that such a thing should not have happened,” said the Haryana CM.

Khattar also said the Akali MLAs were sitting in their cars after the Punjab assembly session had ended for the day.

“When the day's proceedings of the Haryana assembly ended, I was interacting with media when they suddenly came out of their vehicles. What has happened was not appropriate,” said Khattar. In the meeting with the Haryana assembly speaker, police officials informed Speaker Gupta that there are seven common routes to access Punjab and Haryana assembly premises which are housed in a common building.

In such a situation, it is difficult to regulate the movement of the members of the two assemblies.

Speaker Gupta directed to formulate a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for future sessions.

Meanwhile, on Haryana Vidhan Sabha secretariat’s decision to lodge an FIR against them, its SAD MLAs said their party has always stood for the welfare of farmers.

They asserted that they will continue to raise their voice against the “repression” of farmers and human rights activists in Haryana even if the Haryana government registered ten cases against them.

“We will not be cowed down by registration of any case against us as is being threatened by the Haryana Vidhan Sabha speaker. We are even ready to go to jail for the cause of farmers,” they said.

“We will continue our agitation against the repressive policies of the Haryana government,” SAD legislative party leader Sharanjit Singh Dhillon added in a statement here.

“We used our democratic right to hold a peaceful protest against Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. We were protesting in our own Vidhan Sabha building premises,” he said.

“The Haryana government is trying to use the same repressive measures against us as it has done with the farmer agitation. We are, however, ready to make any sacrifice for the farmers’ cause,” he added.

The SAD MLAs, including legislative party leader Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, Bikram Singh Majithia, Lakhbir Singh Lodhinangal and N K Sharma had condemned the Khattar government for 'indulging in atrocities' against human rights activists Naudeep Kaur and Shiv Kumar, saying the torture inflicted on them was unimaginable in a democratic society.

They had demanded that all cases registered against the two human rights activists as well as hundreds of farmers, who were being 'targeted' only because they opposed the farm laws, should be withdrawn.

The legislators also asked the Haryana government to dismiss police officials who had indulged in atrocities against the human rights activists in jails.

Soon after the Wednesday incident, Haryana assembly Speaker Gian Chand Gupta had strongly objected to the Punjab MLAs' behaviour and termed it 'indecent'.

Gupta had spoken to Punjab Assembly Speaker Rana K P Singh over the phone and urged him to take cognisance of the matter. PTI SUN VSD RAX RAX