Twenty MLAs, including nineteen members of Opposition Congress Party, were suspended from the Chhattisgarh Assembly on Wednesday after they entered the well of the House seeking debate over the Dantewada jailbreak incident through an adjournment motion.
Not satisfied with the assurance given by the Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ajay Chandrakar that the discussion would be taken up after the routine business of the House, the Congress persisted with their demand for the discussion. The Opposition members also sought the resignation of the state home minister Ramvichar Netam for the lapses that led to the jail break and his alleged failure to curb the naxal menace.
Immediately after the Question Hour, the deputy leader of Opposition Bhupesh Baghel raised the issue of jail break and sought discussion on it through the adjournment motion. "The jailor of the Dantewada jail BS Mankar was posted there for 7 long years and the strength of prisoners lodged were almost double the capacity which were against the rules", said Bhaghel. The Congress members further alleged the laxity shown by the jail officials in the security arrangements.
Around 300 prisoners led by hardcore Maoists led an audacious jail break on December 16 last year.
Replying to opposition's demand, home minister Ramvichar Netam defended that swift action was initiated by the state government and the DIG (Jail) PD Verma was placed under suspension while the jailor Mankar was arrested following his links with the naxalites lodged in the Dantewada jail. But the Opposition were not satisfied with the home minister's response.
The Chair asked the Opposition to put forth their arguments to justify the demand for the acceptance of the motion. But the Opposition Congress was adamant for discussion on the motion and not on its merit of acceptance.
All 19 Congress MLAs present raised slogans against the state government and stormed into the well of the House. They got suspended automatically for violating the rules of the House.
The lone NCP member Nobel Verma too was suspended for entering the well along with the Congress members. The deputy speaker Badridhar Diwan declared the suspension of all 20 MLAs.
According to the Chhattisgarh Assembly proceeding rules, anyone entering the well of the House gets automatically suspended and the suspension tenure is decided by the Speaker.