Kerala Assembly saw unprecedented violence on Friday as Opposition leaders clashed with MLAs of the ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front, refusing to let finance minister KM Mani present the budget because of corruption charges against him.
The ruckus came after a dramatic night when Mani and some of his colleagues locked themselves inside the assembly to thwart the Opposition’s attempts to prevent him from delivering the speech. Members of the LDF also stayed inside the assembly overnight.
The incident has been widely criticised by lawmakers and by the media. And here's why:
1. Doors were blocked, chairs and tables were broken and stood upon
2. Mics were pulled out and thrown
3. The Speaker's chair wasn't spared either
4. Security had to be called in to rescue and protect MLAs
5. Meanwhile, the finance minister proceeded to read out parts of the budget
UDF members and security staff had to form a strong cordon to prevent the Opposition from physically obstructing Mani.
6. MLAs fell left, right and centre
7. And one Left MLA apparently couldn't take the pressure
8. As if all of this wasn't enough, one MLA was bitten as well
At a press conference later, Congress MLA K Sivadasan Nair took off his shirt to show bite marks and a CPI (M) legislator alleged she was partially disrobed in the chaos.
9. Chief minister Oomen Chandy looked quite unperturbed, however
10. Protests were widespread outside the House too
Police used water cannons and lathis to disperse thousands of LDF workers who had laid siege to the building. An LDF supporter who had arrived for the protests died of a heart attack.
At least nine MLAs were injured in the chaos and many security personnel sustained minor injuries.
“It was a black day for the state. It is a shame the house turned a battleground. It is high time for the angry members to introspect,” said a visibly upset chief minister Oommen Chandy. Speaker N Sakthan said he would take action against the erring members who destroyed his chamber.