Bhubaneswar: In an unprecedented turn of events in the Odisha Assembly, Leader of Opposition (LoP) Pradipta Naik on Saturday tore up a reply copy submitted by Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain and threw the same on the Speaker’s podium.
The Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister had submitted the written reply to a question raised by the LoP on Mandi issue. Alleging Mandi mismanagement, the BJP members demanded a solution to the issue through an all-party meeting.
Senior Congress leader Tara Prasad Bahinipati requested the Speaker with folded hands to ensure smooth procurement of paddy at Mandis across the state. He also demanded for an adjournment motion to debate on the issue.
In reaction, Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro said, “The Minister concerned today submitted his reply on the matter. Let’s wait for seven days, after which he will be summoned to present the facts.”
As pandemonium continued to prevail in the House by the Opposition, the Speaker adjourned the House till 5.15 PM and again till 5.40 PM today. The Speaker also called for an all-party meeting.
Meanwhile, Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Narasingha Mishra wrote to the Speaker saying that a statement given by the latter is false which may amount to breach of privilege of the House.
“Yesterday, you announced in the House that during all-party meeting held in your chamber, it was decided that the Food Supplies Minister will make a statement relating to paddy procurement. I protested immediately and said that I had not agreed to your proposal for directing the Minister to make such statement in the House,” said the CLP in the letter.
Seeking the Speaker’s clarification on the matter in the House, Mishra cautioned the latter that if this was not done, his party will not attend any all-party meeting in future.