Bhubaneswar: Opposition BJP and Congress Members on Friday stalled the State Legislative Assembly over Minister Naba Kisore Das murder case. Due to strong protest by the Opposition, the House witnessed several adjournments throughout the day.
Speaker BK Arukha adjourned the House six times, twice during the pre-lunch session and four times during the post-lunch session.
As soon as the House assembled at 10.30 AM, BJP and Congress members trooped into the well of the House and raised slogans against the government in the sensational murder of the then Health Minister. They demanded the resignation of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who is holding the Home portfolio.
Though Speaker Shri Arukha appealed to the Opposition to go back to their seats and raise their issue during zero hour, the angry Opposition members did not pay any heed to the Speaker’s request. The Speaker was forced to adjourn the House till 11.30 am.
There was no change in the situation when the House reassembled at 11.30 am to take up the zero hour. The Opposition BJP and Congress again rushed to the well of the house and started raising slogans on the minister’s murder issue.
In a chaotic scenario, the Speaker asked Parliamentary Affairs Minister Niranjan Pujari to table the Cabinet decisions taken on Wednesday. As soon as Shri Pujari completed his readings, Shri Arukha again adjourned the proceedings till 4 pm.
In the post-lunch session too, the Opposition members continued their protest inside the Assembly. Finding no other solution, the Speaker convened an all-party meeting adjourning the House.
As the meeting remained inconclusive and failed to diffuse the charged atmosphere inside the well of the House, the Speaker called for the presentation of the reports of the departmentally related standing committee and finally adjourned the House for the day till Monday.
The Opposition BJP and Congress members demanded resignation of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in the murder case of the Minister Naba Kisore Das.
Speaking to media persons outside the assembly, BJP chief whip Mohan Majhi said, though 41 days passed to the murder of minister Naba Das, the Odisha crime branch, which is investigating the case, is yet to find anything about conspiracy and motive behind the crime.
“If the result of the 23 years of the Naveen Patnaik government will be zero even after passing of 41 days to crime, how can we accept it? This shows that the state government is inefficient and incapable. So, the Chief Minister has no moral right to continue in his position,” demanded Shri Majhi. He demanded a CBI investigation into the case.
Similarly, senior Congress MLA Taraprasad Bahinipati too slammed the government over the sensational murder case. While the medical board has said that accused Gopal Das is not mentally ill, the police are investigating whether he is mentally unsound or not, he said.
“Though more than a month has passed, the crime branch has yet to find out the motive behind the murder. We had demanded a court-monitored SIT probe, but the government rejected it. As the Chief Minister is holding the home portfolio, he should resign,” Shri Bahinipati demanded.
Though the government has accepted the conspiracy angel, it has not made a detailed statement in this direction. “As we don’t have any other option, we are demanding resignation of the Chief Minister,” said senior Congress MLA Narasingha Mishra.
On the other hand, Treasury Bench Member Sudhir Samal said the people are watching the opposition members, who have stalled the Assembly proceedings and important question hour. The 4.5 crore people of Odisha will give them a befitted reply in the 2024 election, he said.
The Chief Minister and MoS Home have already made statements on the murder case. Besides, the crime branch investigation is going on under the supervision of the judiciary. Still, the opposition members are making it an issue to put forth some false and baseless information, which people will not accept, Shri Samal said.
The Budget session of the Assembly has been witnessing a ruckus over the minister murder case since its beginning on February 21. The first phase of the session completed on March 1 while the second phase, which started on Friday, will continue till April 6.