Four MNS MLAs -- Shishir Shinde, Ramesh Wanjale, Vasant Gite and Ram Kadam-- were on Monday evening suspended from the Assembly for four years for assaulting Abu Asim Azmi. They were also charged with assaulting Meenakshi Patil, an MLA who assisted Azmi.
Earlier today, there was pandemonium on the opening day of the Maharashtra Assembly session in Mumbai. Raj Thackeray’s Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) demanded that all MLAs take the oath in Marathi.
As Samajwadi Party MLA Abu Asim Azmi, who had earlier raised the MNS’ hackles by demanding Assembly documents in Hindi, took the oath in Hindi, MNS MLAs stormed the well of the House.
They pulled away the podium and flung it aside, raising slogans and flashing placards.
Ruling alliance MLAs, including Meenakshi Patil of the Peasants and Workers Party, then helped Azmi take the oath.
Throughout, banners were flung at them and Azmi was abused.
As he made his way back to his seat, MNS MLA Ram Kadam assaulted him, forcing an adjournment of the House.
Later, Chief Minister Ashok Chavan tabled a resolution asking the Speaker to take action against the MNS MLAs. The Bharatiya Janata Party supported this while the Shiv Sena condemned the MNS MLAs’ behaviour.