Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Assembly on Thursday witnessed a ruckus over the enforcement directorate’s (ED) summon to Congress president Sonia Gandhi on National Herald money laundering case. The House witnessed several adjournments.
Congress member Taraprasad Bahinipati raised the issue during the Zero Hour and alleged that the Narendra Modi government at the Centre have been deliberately harassing Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi on this case.
Though no case has been filed against the Gandhi family, the ED, on the behest of the Centre, issued notice to harass them, he further alleged.
Terming today (Thursday) as a ‘black day’, Bahinipati said the Central government is trying to supress the voice of opposition misusing its agencies.
Congress legislature party leader Narasingha Mishra said the ED has summoned Sonia Gandhi to depose before it on Thursday even when the Parliament is in session.
“This is a breach of privilege. Every member has the right to participate in the proceedings of the house but the ED issued the summon,” Mishra said.
“The summon has been issued against Sonia deliberately to suppress the voice of Opposition as the Centre doesn’t want an Opposition in the country,” he added.
Mishra further said tolerance is essential in a democracy but the BJP has become intolerant.
Raising slogans against the Modi government, the Congress members trooped into the Well of the house and created an uproarious scene in the assembly.
To counter the Congress members, the BJP members also rushed to the Well and shouted slogans.
BJP Chief Whip Mohan Majhi urged the Speaker to conduct the business of the house stating that recently Mishra had also said that issues not concerning the house cannot be discussed here.
Speaking to reporters outside the House, BJP deputy leader Bishnu Sethi said the Congress members have raised an issue which should not be discussed in the House, as per the long tradition.
“When the ED had issued notices to Narendra Modi during his tenure as Chief Minister, the BJP members never staged protests,” said Sethi.
As noisy scenes continued to prevail in the House, Speaker Bikram Keshari Arukh adjourned the proceedings first for ten minutes and then for 15 minutes and finally till 4 p.m.
Meanwhile, the Odisha Congress leader and workers led by president Sarat Pattanayak took out a rally towards ED office here from the Congress Bhawan. However, the police stopped them mid-way.