As soon as the Delhi Assembly began the proceedings of the Winter Session on Tuesday, the members rose on their feet demanding a last-minute intervention to stop the impending sealing drive.
BJP MLA Saheb Singh Chauhan coined a new slogan for Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit - "Ceiling Dikshit". He put the entire blame on the CM for doing nothing to protect the traders. Another BJP MLA Vijay Jolly said Delhi is under the spell and menace of 3Ds - Dikshit, dengue and demolitions.
As the situation became unruly, Minister AS Lovely brought a resolution expelling all the BJP MLAs from the House for the rest of the session. Interestingly, as the resolution was read out, most of the Opposition MLAs were sitting on their benches while only one was in the Well of the House.
Bereft of the Opposition, the House resembled a meeting of the Congress Legislature Party. Only two non-Congress members were present - NCP's Ramvir Singh Bidhuri and Deputy Speaker Shoaib Iqbal.
Initiating the debate, Congress MLA Mukesh Sharma said the Master Plan has no solution to offer. "The MPD should be sent to the Delhi assembly for discussion and amendment before notification," he said. Kalkaji MLA Subhash Chopra asked that the report of the Tejinder Khanna committee should be tabled in the House so that the people's representatives know what is happening on the ground.
Issuing a threat on sealing, Chopra said: "We cannot sit in our houses when shops are being sealed and traders rendered unemployed. We cannot abdicate our responsibility as long as we are alive," he said.
But it was Bidhuri who launched a frontal attack on the Congress. "A dog dies in an accident when it cannot take a decision whether to go right or left from the middle of the road," he said. Bidhuri said the Urban Development Minister, the GoM and the Delhi government have been contradicting each other on the issue from the very beginning. "A sword has been placed on the neck of the traders and everybody would be affected sooner or later," said the NCP state president. Bidhuri signed off on an ominous note: "We will not obey the court orders. We are not afraid of the circumstances".
Deputy Speaker Shoaib Iqbal demanded dissolution of the MCD with immediate effect. "Were the eyes of the MCD sealed in the last 40 years as it overlooked the problem?" asked Iqbal.