The Budget Session of the newly constituted West Bengal Assembly began on a stormy note with Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar cutting short his speech midway amid sloganeering by the opposition benches. Legislators of the Bharatiya Janata Party responded by raising slogans and displaying placards inside the House.
The chaos forced the governor to halt his speech and ultimately terminate it. He then left the assembly as Speaker Biman Banerjee escorted the governor to his vehicle. Reports suggested that it was a part of the BJP’s strategy to ensure that Dhankhar would not have to read the whole speech, which was prepared by the ruling TMC.
Notably, just like the previous year, Dhankhar had raised objections over few points mentioned in the draft speech sent to him by the ruling party. The Governor wanted to include post-poll violence incidences in his speech to which the TMC did not agree.
TMC Chief Whip Nirmal Ghosh had said that the norm is the governor reads out the speech prepared by the state government and he cannot make any change as per his whims and fancies.
The BJP MLAs while protesting inside the assembly raised the issue of post-poll violence and chanted ‘Jai Shri Ram’ inside the assembly.
This is also the first time that BJP MLA Suvendu Adhikari, who was earlier a close aide of Banerjee, will take on the CM directly inside the house in the capacity of Leader of the Opposition.
“Incidents of post-poll violence in Bengal have been barbaric. BJP workers have been murdered. More than 300 women were molested and few raped. This isn’t mentioned in the Governor’s address. We have protested at Vidhan Sabha and the fight will continue till the violence ends,” said Suvendu Adhikari after staging a walkout.
The BJP has 75 MLAs and is the main opposition in the Bengal assembly. The ruling TMC has 211 while Rashtriya Secular Majlis Party and Independent have one each.