DW BUREAU / Chandigarh
The Haryana Assembly Monday witnessed an hour-long ruckus during the Zero Hour when Speaker Kanwar Pal disallowed INLD’s adjournment motion on the SYL canal issue, following which the opposition members staged a symbolic walkout from the House. As soon as the Zero Hour began, INLD’s senior leader Abhay Singh Chautala, who is also the Leader of Opposition in the Assembly, sought to know from the speaker the fate of his party’s adjournment motion moved over non-completion of the Sutlej Yamuna Link canal.
However, the speaker disallowed the motion, saying “the matter is sub-judice and therefore, cannot be taken up in the Assembly for debate.” Dissatisfied with his reply, Chautala said, “There is no issue concerning SYL which is pending before courts.” Congress’ Karan Singh Dalal said, “Employees of various departments are protesting on the streets, but the government has invoked ESMA to crush their democratic right to protest.” Chautala also made a mention of the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA), saying “it has been invoked to create fear among employees so that they do not raise their voice in the future”.
“How can this (SYL) be disallowed…there is nothing pending before court. Is SYL issue not important? Should it not be discussed in the House. First and foremost, this issue should be taken up,” Chautala said.
Later, the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) members raised slogans against the government.
The Congress MLAs raised slogans and dubbed the government as “anti-farmers, anti-traders and anti-employees”. Congress Legislature Party leader Kiran Chowdhary, along with some other party members, rushed to the Well of the House and sought to know from the speaker the fate of the adjournment motions moved by her, including those pertaining to rising fuel prices, SYL canal and law and order issues.
However, as INLD members kept raising slogans against the government demanding a discussion on the SYL canal issue, Finance Minister Abhimanyu launched a counter attack on them, reminding them that six BJP MLAs from Haryana had quit their seats in protest against annulment of inter-state water accords by Punjab in 2004.
“Our MLAs in Haryana did not think twice and gave up their seats for the sake of SYL. Why did you stick to power then, you too should have resigned from your seats at that time,” Abhimanyu told the main opposition INLD legislators.
As the ruckus in the House continued, the INLD members staged a symbolic walkout to protest their adjournment motion on SYL being disallowed.
Towards the end of the Zero Hour, heated exchanges erupted between INLD MLA Naseem Ahmed and Haryana Minister Krishan Kumar Bedi after former took strong objection to some words said by the minister to him pertaining to the death of a 23-year-old man in Nuh district of Haryana last month.
The man was allegedly caught in a cross fire between some villagers and police teams which had gone to the area to arrest a wanted criminal.
Intervening in the issue, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar told the members that on Tuesday he will be making a detailed statement in the House pertaining to the Nuh incident.