Thiruvananthapuram, Mar 27 (PTI) Kerala Assembly today witnessed a noisy protest by opposition UDF over what it called the ‘continuous’ absence of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in the House during the ongoing budget session.

Vijayan, who is in New Delhi today to take part in the CPI(M) central committee meeting, did not attend the House on on Monday also.

Opposition Congress-led UDF members stood up asking ‘Where is the Chief Minister?” when PWD minister G Sudhakaran replied on behalf of Vijayan during the zero hour.

Though both Sudhakaran and Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan said the Chief Minister had informed the business advisory committee of the legislature that he would be away today, the opposition continued the protest.

UDF members said Vijayan, who holds the Home portfolio, skipped the session on Monday also when a notice for a motion was moved on the “highhandedness” of police.

He was present only for some time in the assembly yesterday, they said during the brief protest.

Seeking to move a notice for an adjournment motion on the atrocities by goons and mafia gangs, K Muraleedharan (Congress) asked whether Vijayan was following the ‘model’ of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who he alleged, used to skip Parliament sessions.

The MLA said the Chief Minister, who gave a miss to the assembly session, had taken part in a programme of CITU, the trade union outfit of the Left party, on Monday.

He wanted to know whether the Central Committee meeting and CITU programme were more important to Vijayan than the Assembly session.

Sharing his party colleague’s sentiments, Leader of the Opposition Ramesh Chennithala said though the Chief Minister was busy, he should realise the significance of attending assembly sessions.

However, Sudhakaran refuted the opposition charges and said Vijayan was a “model” chief minister who had participated the maximum number of days in the assembly proceedings.

He justified the Chief Minister attending party Central Committee meeting.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.