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Newsmakers of the budget session

chandigarh Updated: Mar 26, 2013 00:07 IST

Plain-speaker of the session: Shivraj Patil
On the opening day of the budget session on March 11, the Punjab governor, in his address to the state legislative assembly, desisted from referring to the SAD-BJP government as "my government" and preferred the words "the government". The governor, formerly a union minister in the Congress-led UPA government, also skipped half a sentence of his speech carrying praise for chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, which led to the raising of eyebrows.

Spoilsport of the session: Sunil Jakhar
As leader of the Congress Legislature Party, Jakhar's act of indiscretion of facilitating unauthorised entry of Tarn Taran woman Harbinder Kaur, a victim of police highhandedness, into the Vidhan Sabha complex was a trigger for all the chaos and the Congress boycott that followed during the entire budget session. It was a gross impropriety on his part to have resorted to such publicity-grabbing gimmick. All through the session, Jakhar singularly failed to break the legislative logjam and lost a key opportunity to put the ruling alliance on the mat and prove his own credentials as an effective leader of the Opposition.

Show-stealer of the session: Harbrinder Kaur
As a stealth-entrant into the high-security Punjab Vidhan Sabha complex, she hogged as much media limelight as she had when she was publicly brutalised by Tarn Taran cops. She became the face of the victims of police high-handedness and gave jitters to the Badal government. While she escaped action for her illegal entry, her presence charged up the Congress to go berserk, pushing the House into a chaos that eventually led to the party boycott of the entire session.

The storm troopers of the session
Nine Congress MLAs Balbir Singh Sidhu, Amrinder Singh Raja Warring, Sukhjinder Randhawa, Hardyal Singh Kamboj, Jagmohan Singh Kang, Kuljit Singh Nagra, Parminder Singh Pinki, Charanjit Singh Channi and Rana Gurjit Singh were debarred from the budget session after they threw legislative reports towards the speaker, punched assembly marshals, stood on the chair of the Vidhan Sabha secretary, while Kang occupied the speaker's chair. The Congress' charge to capture the speaker's podium was led by Warring, who unabashedly punched the Vidhan Sabha marshals on March 13.

Tough-talker of the session : Madan Mohan Mittal
The BJP stalwart played his role as parliamentary affairs minister quite deftly, scoring brownie points over the Opposition. When it was turning out that the logjam in the Vidhan Sabha was due to the government's tough stand against the Congress for creating pandemonium, Mittal, in a single stroke, distanced the government from the impasse. He deflected the ball into speaker Charanjit Singh Atwal's court on the grounds that the logjam was an issue between the speaker and the Congress as the opposition MLAs had "disgraced" the chair. Meanwhile, without giving any elbow space for the speaker to hammer out a compromise with the Congress, Mittal insisted: "Congress MLAs should come in, and with folded hands say sorry to you (speaker)."

Absentee of the session: Capt Amarinder Singh
Former chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh, who recently handed over reins of the state Congress to Partap Singh Bajwa, remained absent from the House for the entire budget session, which began on March 11. He was also not vocal, except once supporting the Congress publicly for holding a mock session outside the Vidhan Sabha.