Guwahati, May 9 (PTI) Assam Assembly today witnessed noisy scenes over allegation of partisan behaviour of the speaker, who even offered to quit if members found him to be discriminatory in his rulings.
Speaker Hitendra Nath Goswami expressed unhappiness when Congress MLA Sherman Ali Ahmed walked out of the House alleging discrimination against MLAs of his party over allowing them to discuss policies of education department.
“You (MLAs) have entrusted a responsibility on me and I am trying to fulfil that. I am in this chair till the MLAs want. If you think I am not doing it (my job) properly and there is discrimination, please let me know. I will quit,” the speaker said.
Earlier, opposition Congress and AIUDF moved a Cut Motion on supplementary demands for grants for mid-day meal scheme and Goswami allowed discussion on the matter.
After a few MLAs spoke on the issue, Ahmed rose and started talking about education policies of the government.
On this, the speaker asked the member to restrict his speech only to mid-day meal scheme, without talking on the entire education policy.
Ahmed said that Goswami had allowed other members to speak on the entire policy.
Besides, Cut Motion was a device to discuss government policies and it was a tradition to talk at length on the topic, he said.
Goswami, however, did not accept this point and said that he had already allowed Congress MLAs to speak on the policy and now it should be confined to the topic only.
Ahmed then staged a walkout saying that it was discrimination against the opposition.
Congress MLAs Rupjyoti Kurmi and Abdul Khaleque also said about the tradition of discussing policies at length on Cut Motion topics.
Ruling MLAs then rose to their feet and started shouting against Congress MLAs.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary criticised Ahmed for being critical to the speaker’s ruling.
Goswami said, “I have to follow the rule. If some rules were not followed earlier, it does not mean that it will never be followed. We all are learning. I have allowed all to speak. There is no discrimination at all. Please do not say like this.”
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.