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Rajsthan Assembly witnesses noisy scenes as Congress sticks to demand for farm loan waiver

Agriculture minister Prabhu Lal Saini said that the government has constituted a high-power committee to submit recommendations on farm loan-waiver.

jaipur Updated: Oct 25, 2017 20:25 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Sachin Pilot,Congress,Rajasthan
State Congress president speaks to mediapersons outside the state assembly on Wednesday. (Prabhakar Sharma/HT Photo)

The Rajasthan Assembly witnessed noisy scenes during the Question Hour on Wednesday as the Congress continued their dharna demanding complete loan waiver for farmers.

Speaker Kailash Meghwal continued the proceedings amid uproar and did not pay heed to the protesting legislators. However, commotion continued in the Zero Hour and the speaker adjourned the house for half an hour.

Congress leaders, who were sitting on a dharna in the house from Tuesday afternoon, continued their protest as the assembly met on Wednesday. They trooped into the well of the house shouting anti-government slogans as the lawmakers assembled to begin the house proceedings at 11 am on Wednesday.

Despite the speaker’s plea to call off the sit-in, Congress MLAs paid no heed and continued. Meghwal later said that the MLAs are making a mockery of democracy.

To pacify the opposition, parliamentary affair minister Rajendra Rathore said that the government is ready to hold discussions on farmers’ issue in the house.

“Let the Congress inform if they have waived off even a single penny in the last 50 years. Congress MLAs are just creating chaos in the house,” said home minister Gulab Chand Kataria.

The uproar continued during the Zero Hour. Meghwal said if the Congress MLAs are ready for discussion on farmers’ issues, he is ready to allocate time. To which, senior Congress MLA Pradyuman Singh said, “We are ready for a discussion if the government is ready to announce loan waiver.”

Agriculture minister Prabhu Lal Saini said that the government has constituted a high-power committee to submit recommendations on farm loan-waiver.

Meanwhile, state Congress president Sachin Pilot visited party MLAs on dharna at the state assembly. “The entire state is suffering due to the BJP government’s dictatorial attitude. Sidelining public welfare issues, the BJP is making promises to misguide as the bypolls are near,” said Pilot.

He said that the government has constituted a committee to avert farmer loan waiver, which shows that they are insensitive towards farmers’ issues.

“The government has brought the controversial ordinance to protect corrupt and suppress rights of people, media and judiciary, which now under the pressure of Congress and other democratic forces has been referred to a select committee,” said Pilot referring to the controversial ordinance that shields public servants from probe without the government’s approval.

The BJP government had tabled the Rajasthan Criminal Laws (Rajasthan Amendment) Bill 2017 in the assembly on Monday, but was forced to refer it to a select committee after protests.

“No committee was constituted for the controversial ordinance. But only after over 80 farmer suicides, they constituted a committee, this shows that the BJP isn’t concerned about the farmers,” he said.

First Published: Oct 25, 2017 19:55 IST