Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani and 14 Congress MLAs were suspended for a day from the Gujarat Assembly for unruly behaviour on Wednesday. They were evicted from the floor of the House by marshals.
A two-day session of the Gujarat Assembly began on Wednesday, the last one before a new House is elected by this year-end. The state goes to polls in December this year. It is mandatory to convene a session of the House once in six months, and the last session was in April to pass the state budget.
When the Legislative Assembly proceedings began on Wednesday, Leader of Opposition Sukhram Rathva demanded a special half-hour discussion on the issues raised by protesting farmers, government employees, Anganwadi workers and ex-servicemen.
However, when Speaker Nimaben Acharya refused Rathva’s demand, Mevani along with the Congress leaders jumped to the well of the House and started raising slogans saying “give justice to employees”, “give justice to forest staff”, and “give justice to ex-servicemen”.
Deputy leader of opposition, Shailesh Parmar, amid continuous sloganeering by his party colleagues, questioned why the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was not willing to hold a discussion over the matters.
“When so many employees of almost all the departments are agitating over their pending issues, why is the BJP not ready to hold a discussion in the House?” Parmar asked.
Despite being asked by the Speaker to return to their seats, the Opposition MLAs refused, following which Gujarat Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Rajendra Trivedi proposed the suspension of the legislators sitting in the well.
The Speaker then suspended Mevani and 14 other Congress MLAs for the day through a majority voice vote.