Two opposition legislators — MLA Pravin Darekar of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and MLC Diwakar Raote of Shiv Sena — were suspended from their membership to the Maharashtra state legislature on Friday.
Darekar was suspended for a year, until the next monsoon session, for using cuss words against chief minister Prithviraj Chavan while walking out of the assembly. Opposition benches staged a walkout protesting what they termed Chavan’s ‘ineffectual’ reply to the long discussion on Mumbai’s housing and infrastructure woes.
Raote, who was part of the late Bal Thackeray’s core team and the group leader of the Sena in the council, was suspended till December 31, 2013, for making remarks that insulted council chairman Shivajirao Deshmukh during a meeting held at the latter’s chambers on Friday morning, said Parliamentary Affairs minister Harshavardhan Patil.
Both legislators refuted charges levelled against them, with opposition parties coming together to back them.
“Darekar used language that was offensive and unparliamentary and insulted the state assembly. He used a swear word as he was walking out despite the chief minister’s detailed response on the debate. Darekar will not be allowed in the Vidhan Sabha premises till the next monsoon session,” said Patil.
Addressing the media later, Darekar said, “I would never use such a word in the state assembly. I am well aware of the decorum and dignity of the House. They should have made the camera recordings public before issuing this suspension.”
At another press meet, Raote said, “In the meeting, government representatives kept insisting that the opposition was aggressive yesterday.
Truth is, NCP legislators were aggressive and did not want the debate to happen. When they did not listen to us, I asked the chairman why he did not believe us and why he was being unjust, after which I walked out and contained myself.”
He added that he has been a legislator for long enough to know what good parliamentary behaviour is. He even extended an apology to Deshmukh.