Ahmedabad: Gujarat Assembly Speaker Rajendra Trivedi today suspended around 15 Congress MLAs for a day after they sat in the well and shouted slogans against the ruling BJP over VAT being charged on fuel by the state government. Besides these, another Congress MLA was suspended for two days by the Speaker.
The exact number of MLAs suspended from the Assembly for a day was not immediately clear. Following the suspension and eviction, nearly 50 other Congress MLAs staged a walkout from the Legislative Assembly.
Earlier during the Question Hour, Congress MLA Vimal Chudasama sought details about the Value Added Tax (VAT) being charged on petrol and diesel by the BJP government. The MLA also asked if the government plans to reduce the taxes on fuel to give relief to the people.
In his reply, Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel said the government charges 20 percent VAT on fuel. He then compared Congress-ruled states like Punjab and Karnataka with Gujarat and claimed both these states charge 28 and 30 percent tax respectively is much higher than Gujarat.
Irked by the comparison, Leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani asked Patel to stick to Gujarat and have a debate on it. When Speaker Trivedi stopped him from making further comments, all Congress MLAs started shouting slogans against the BJP government.
As around 15 Congress MLAs sat in the well, the Speaker first suspended them for the day and called in marshalls to evict them. While the MLAs were walking out of the House, the Speaker took a serious note of Congress’ Unjha MLA Asha Patel’s sloganeering. Speaker Trivedi termed the words “BJP Hooligans” said by Asha Patel derogatory and suspended her for two days.
After coming out of the Assembly, Congress MLAs sat outside the Speaker’s chamber for about an hour and raised slogans against him.