BJD MLAs question Tytlers presence in Assly

Bhubaneswar: Senior Congress leader Jagdish Tytler was once again targeted on Monday by ruling BJD MLAs who took exception to his presence at a Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting held yesterday at a committee room in Orissa Assembly premises.

"Tytler is not a member of this house. Therefore, he cannot use the committee room meant for MLAs. Assembly is not a political institution," senior BJD member Ananta Das said during zero hour.

Das was supported by many ruling BJD MLAs who demanded unconditional apology from leader of the opposition Bhupinder Singh of Congress who invited Tytler to the committee room.

The issue concerning Tytler`s presence in committee room came barely a week after BJD MLAs expressed their displeasure over the Congress leader`s visit to Sri Jagannath Temple in Puri on March 16.

BJD MLAs had raised question on Tytler`s visit to Sri Jagannath Temple after dubbing him a "non-Hindu". Tytler, however, said he was a Hindu and therefore could visit the 12th century shrine.

The Congress and BJP said there was no fault in Tytler attending the CLP meeting at the committee room.

"Our (BJP) leaders Pramod Mahajan and Venkaiah Naidu had attended a joint meeting of BJP-BJD legislature party in the past. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik was also present when Mahajan and Naidu attended the meeting at the committee room," BJP legislature party leader K V Singhdeo said.

Claiming that the ruling BJD was "afraid of" Tytler, Congress chief whip Prasad Harichandan said there was no harm in Congress leaders from Delhi attending meeting at a committee room in Assembly premises.

"Even frontal organisations of political parties can hold meetings in assembly annexe," he said.