NCP activists gherao speaker

Bhubaneswar: Demanding a quick decision on Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MLAs’ merger issue with ruling BJD, NCP activists on Thursday stage a demonstration in front of the residence of Assembly speaker Pradip Kumar Amat.

The sloganeering workers holding placards demanded the speaker to take a fair and unbiased decision regarding the matter.

According to sources, the activists were later taken into preventive custody by police after the latter foiled their bid to enter into the house premises.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday had set aside the review petition of Amat regarding the controversial matter.

The issue was also raised by Kantabanji Congress MLA Santosh Singh Saluja in the Assembly on Thursday who said that SC’s petition rejection has put the speaker’s dignity at stake who is yet to take a final decision on the issue.

Parliamentary affairs minister Kalpataru Das objected to Saluja’s comment and said that since matter is sub-judice it can’t be discussed in House and requested the speaker to expunge it from Assembly proceedings.

On June 5 last NCP MLAs-Amar Prasad Satpathy, Naveen Nanda, Prasant Nanda and Ramachandra Hansda- had joined BJD opposing which NCP state president Utkal Keshari Parida moved High Court seeking scrapping of their membership in Sate Assembly. The High Court had asked the Speaker to decide on the matter within eight weeks.
Challenging the HC’s order, the Speaker had filed a special leave petition which was too rejected by Supreme Court upholding the HC order.