Chaos hits West Bengal Assembly over property bill; MLA Abdul Mannan injured in ruckus

Leader of opposition and Congress MLA Abdul Mannan was admitted to hospital after he fell ill in a ruckus over Property Damage bill in the West Bengal Assembly. The ruckus started in the state Assembly after the opposition demanded more amendments in the bill.

According to The Indian Express, the Mamata Banerjee government has introduced a change in the West Bengal Prevention of Defacement of Property Act to stop any kind of damage to government property.  The amended bill, once passed, would check vandals, rioters and arsonists who could face imprisonment upto a maximum of 7 years for damaging any government property.

Mannan was suspended by Speaker Biman Banerjee as he continued his protest with placards against the government for bringing West Bengal Maintenance of Public Order (Amendment)
Bill, 2017 and termed it as "black law" while refusing to heed to the Speaker who asked him to wait for discussions on it. The Speaker then asked Mannan, the Congress MLA from Champdani, to withdraw for the day but he remained defiant and was suspended.

Mamata Banerjee. Reuters.

Mamata Banerjee. Reuters.

As soon as he was suspended, Mannan sat in the Well of the House and the marshalls tried to forcibly evict him, leading to a scuffle between them and Congress members. The Congress leader fell sick during the scuffle and was taken to a hospital in an ambulance. The Congress and the Left legislators staged a walkout from the House protesting against the incident. Meanwhile, Congress MLA Pratima Rajak claimed that she was molested by security officials.

"The security (officials) pulled me by my saree and tried to kick me," Rajak, the MLA from Burwan, told reporters. The West Bengal Maintenance of Public Order (Amendment) Bill, 2017 was later passed in the House and the Speaker asked the assembly secretary to take note of the benches which were damaged by opposition MLAs. "Why are they opposed to this bill? Because they
(opposition) don't believe in peaceful movements. They believe in destroying public and government property. We will not let this happen," Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said in the
Assembly.

Earlier on 31 January, The Times of India reported about the Trinamool government facing a "boycott" by all opposition parties in the all-party meeting ahead of the state Assembly's budget session. Trinamool had also decided to stay away from the customary all-party meeting in New Delhi. All Trinamool Congress MPs stayed away from President Pranab Mukerjee's address to the joint sitting of Parliament.

Mannan had told The Times of India reporters that they decided to boycott all party meeting since their proposals are never entertained. (with inputs from PTI)


Published Date: Feb 08, 2017 05:22 pm | Updated Date: Feb 08, 2017 05:31 pm


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