All the 58 members of the YSR Congress Party, the only Opposition party in the AP State Assembly, were suspended en masse on Friday for derailing the proceedings in the House for the second consecutive day on the issue of “call money-cum-sex” racket.
YSRCP president Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy had to face the wrath of Speaker Kodela Sivaprasada Rao for not heeding to his advice to refrain from disrupting the proceedings and facilitate the House to debate on the 125th birth celebrations of Baba Saheb Ambedkar to be held on April 14 next year all over the country.
As the YSRCP members stuck to their guns in wanting a discussion on the “call money racket” first and created a bedlam near the Speaker’s podium raising slogans against Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu, the Speaker, who had earlier adjourned the House for a brief period, took the unprecedented step in suspending the only Opposition party members in the Assembly and thus cleared the decks for the ruling TDP to have its say in bulldozing the YSRCP’s efforts to continue to stall the House proceedings till it succeeded in making the ruling party to yield.
It was no surprise that the House would witness the sordid drama of stalling the proceedings for the second day as trouble erupted immediately after the Speaker disallowed an adjournment motion tabled by the YSRCP again on the raging controversial call money racket. Even as his party members stormed into the well of the House, Jaganmohan Reddy reiterated his charges against the Chief Minister and others of having links with the racketeers and alleged that the government was trying to hoodwink and detail a discussion on the racket to protect the bigwigs of the TDP.
Finance Minister and Minister in-charge of Legislative Affairs Yanamala Ramakrishnudu, repeatedly asserted that the TD government was prepared for a debate on the controversial issue after the Chief Minister makes a statement soon after the debate on Dr Ambedkar celebrations was completed. However, Jagan insisted that the debate on the “call money racket” should be debated first and only after that the Chief Minister could make a statement and the Opposition members should be allowed to seek clarifications.
The Speaker pointed out that the debate on the Ambedkar Jayanthi had already commenced on Thursday and hence it should be completed today. Thereafter the House could debate the call money racket based on the CM’s statement on the issue. This was stoutly opposed by the YSRCP members, who continued to protest near the Speaker’s podium leading to a brief adjournment.
When the high tension drama continued in the House after it reassembled, the Finance Minister named the YSRCP members and wanted them to be suspended till the House completed its debate on Ambedkar Jayanthi celebrations. Thereupon, the Speaker suspended the YSRCP members en masse.
Led by Jaganmohan Reddy, all the suspended YSRCP members squatted at the foot of the statue of Mahatma Gandhi on the Assembly premises outside. The Leader of the Opposition lambasted the Chief Minister and the ruling party members for shielding those were involved in the heinous “call money-cum-sex racket”. He also alleged that Chief Minister’s son Lokesh was also involved in the racket.
All said and done, Jagan’s plan to hijack the Assembly proceedings to remain in limelight seemed to have boomeranged, thanks to the unprecedented action of the Speaker, the ruling TDP had the last laugh in scuttling the YSRCP plan. (NSS)