An all-party meeting in the West Bengal Speaker’s chamber to solve the crisis arising out of the suspension of three CPM MLAs from the House, following the violence on Tuesday, failed as Leader of Opposition Suryakanta Mishra refused to tender an apology for the behaviour of the three MLAs. As a result, the Left MLAs who attended the House in the morning chose to skip the session for the remaining day.
Meanwhile, the Speaker on Wednesday formed two committees under Buddheshwar Mohanty, acting secretary of the Assembly, to probe the incident of power cut in the House in the morning for about seven minutes and also to look into the role of security men of the Assembly when the trouble broke out on Tuesday. “I called an all-party meeting in order to solve the problem. We requested Leader of Opposition Suryakanta Mishra to express regret for the three MLAs but he refused to do so. Even the Congress legislature party leader Md Sohrab requested them to do so but they again refused. In such circumstances it was not possible for me to revoke the suspension,’’ Speaker Biman Banerjee said.
Mishra said it was not possible for them to attend the session as the suspended Left members were not given a chance to defend themselves. “I repeatedly said it was the principle of natural justice that was flouted while delivering suspension order on our MLAs. They should have been given the chance to defend themselves. We will think over whether we will attend the session tomorrow,’’ Mishra said after the meeting. The CPM conducted a mock session outside the Assembly. Congress members wore helmets to the House. They staged a walkout as the Speaker refused to allow them to raise an adjournment motion on power.
Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Partha Chatterjee said the Opposition showed an adamant attitude. “They were not interested in the smooth running of the House.’’
The Trinamool Congress expressed suspicion over the loadsheding and also in the role of the security men. “Today we could not understand how the power cut could take place as we have checked with the service provider and they said there was nothing wrong on their part. And we also believe the role of the security men in yesterday’s incident was not above board,’’ Chatterjee said.
The security men, when contacted, said they did their duty according to the rules of the House.