TRS stalls Andhra assembly for second day

Friday, February 18, 2011

HYDERABAD - A day after unprecedented chaos was witnessed in Andhra Pradesh assembly, the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) Friday stalled the proceedings, demanding the house to pass a resolution urging the central government to table a bill in parliament for the formation of a Telangana state.

Pandemonium prevailed in the house as TRS legislators trooped towards the speaker’s podium, urging the house to take up the debate on Telangana by suspending other business. They were joined by members of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP), who wanted the government to release funds for fee reimbursement and scholarships.

Adding to the woes of the ruling Congress, 14 of its own legislators - loyal to rebel leader Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy - displayed placards along with the photographs of late chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy seeking the release the arrears towards fee reimbursement.

The government owes Rs.3,500 crore to various private professional colleges towards reimbursement of fee of students belonging to socially and economically weaker sections of society under a scheme launched by Rajasekhara Reddy.

The managements of these colleges have threatened to shut the colleges indefinitely from Feb 24 if the government fails to make the payments by then.

Deputy Speaker Nadendla Manohar adjourned the house twice after the legislators did not heed to his appeals to allow smooth conduct of the proceedings.

As soon as the house met for the day, the legislators of opposition parties were on their feet demanding debate on their adjournment motions. Amid the pandemonium, he adjourned the house for 10 minutes.

After the house re-assembled, opposition parties continued their protest, forcing him to adjourn the house for the second time. The deputy speaker held a meeting with floor leaders of all parties in his chamber to find a solution to break the impasse.

Earlier, government chief whip Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka moved a privilege notice against the members involved in Thursday’s incidents in the house. He said it was a black day in the history of the state legislature and the incidents had violated the rights of other members.

The deputy speaker said he had received the notice and would take a decision.

TRS leader Harish Rao said his party would also move a privilege notice against the government for what he called the selective leakage of video footage of Thursday’s incidents in the house.

The visuals showed how TRS and TDP legislators almost attacked Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan when he was addressing joint session of both houses.

The legislators uprooted the mikes, snatched papers from his hands, tore his speech copies and threw it at him, pulled away the lectern and pulled down the chairs of the governor, deputy speaker and the council chairman.

Harish Rao, who had climbed on a table and tried to lunge towards the podium, said the visuals of assembly marshals using the force against them were not released.

Journalists of some television channels launched a sit-in in the assembly premises, protesting release of visuals to only a few channels.

Filed under: Politics

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