Amid din by main Opposition Congress members, the Telangana Legislative Assembly today passed an Amendment Bill to the Land Acquisition Act passed by it in December last year. The special one-day sitting, called to amend the Land Acquisition Act, concluded in just about 10 minutes without much debate.
The amendments to the Act were taken up following a suggestion from the Centre. As the House met for the day, Deputy Chief Minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali, who handles revenue and related portfolios, moved the Bill.
Congress members, who were holding placards, stood up and tried to raise an issue (on farmers problems). Noting that the Amendment Bill was taken up in the Assembly as per a directive from the President, Speaker S Madhusudanachary asked the Congress members to resume their seats and speak on the Bill.
As Congress members refused to comply, the Speaker asked AIMIM member Ahmed Pasha Quadri to speak. When the MIM member began to speak, but the Congress members raised slogans and some of them entered the well of the House. They were stopped from moving ahead by the marshalls.
Saying that the Congress members appeared not keen on speaking on the Bill, Legislative Affairs Minister T Harish Rao said the Bill be passed. Mahmood Ali urged that the Bill be passed and the Speaker took up the procedures to pass the Bill. He announced the passage of the Bill and adjourned the House sine die.
Opposition BJP and TDP were not part of the proceedings as they were suspended from the House earlier.Talking to reporters after the House was adjourned, Leader of Opposition (Congress) K Jana Reddy alleged that the government adopted an undemocratic and dictatorial attitude in not allowing his party members to raise farmers’ problems.
Favouring conducting social impact assessment in the process of land acquisition, Congress MLA and state unit president N Uttam Kumar Reddy said his party would meet President Pranab Mukherjee to urge him not to accept the Bill.
Countering Congress allegations, Deputy Chief Minister (Education) K Srihari found fault with the Congress members for not participating in the debate on the Bill.
The government is ready to address concerns in the interests of farmers if the Congress pointed out any shortcomings in the Bill, he said. Meanwhile, Opposition BJP members held a protest, before the Assembly proceedings began, for not allowing them to attend the Assembly.
It was undemocratic to not allow them to attend the Assembly though they were suspended in the previous sitting when the Bill for increasing reservation to backward sections among Muslims and STs was passed, the BJP members said.