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Speaker suspends 5 Congress MLAs for 2 years for creating ruckus outside Assembly

GOVERNOR-AGAINST-PROTESTMaharashtra Speaker suspends five Congress MLAs for two years for holding protest and blocking Governor’s car outside the Assembly earlier today. The suspended MLAs are – Rahul Bondre, Abdul Sattar, Virendra Jagtap, Jay Kumar Gore and Amar Kale.

Mr Fadnavis’ minority BJP government had won the confidence motion through a voice vote, amid much drama and controversy.

As the Governor made his way into the assembly this evening to make an address, Congress and Shiv Sena MLAs blocked his way, making it difficult for him to walk up the stairs. Mr. Rao was allegedly manhandled and injured during the ruckus.

Speaking in the Assembly, Khadse said Congress legislators Rahul Bondre, Amar Kale, Ranjit Kamble, Vijay Wadettiwar and Abdul Sattar “caused injuries” to two legislature officials as well as the Governor.

Khadse said he wanted to move a resolution suspending these members for unruly behaviour.

“Governor’s left hand was injured. The issue does not end with an apology. This should not be tolerated,” Khadse said.

Congress leader in the House Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil said there was no intention to cause hurt to anyone, but he would apologise.

NCP MLAs Ajit Pawar, R R Patil and Chhagan Bhujbal, however, said the issue should be put to the rest with the apology if the report of Governor getting hurt was true.

This morning, the floor test was brought swiftly forward ahead of schedule and the motion was moved and passed by voice vote. The Shiv Sena’s legislators shouted the loudest nays and trooped into the well or centre, demanding division.

“The motion has been passed,” Speaker Haribhau Bagade announced in the din and moved on to the next agenda. He later said outside the House, “I have followed procedure.”
Mr. Fadnavis tweeted a thank you and said, “I assure that each step by our govt will be in the interest of ppl of Maharashtra.”

The decision to avoid a division vote is being seen as an attempt to not bring on record the possibility of Sharad Pawar’s NCP having voted for the BJP or abstaining. NCP legislator Jitendra Awhad later said, “We had no time to react…to either abstain, or vote in favour…the BJP did not manage the voting process properly.” But he said had the party participated, it would’ve abstained from the vote, which would have helped Mr. Fadnavis win.

The NCP has offered external support to Mr. Fadnavis, to “ensure a stable government,” it says.

The NCP’s former ally, the Congress called it a “black day for democracy.” The party’s Prithiviraj Chavan, called Mr. Fadnavis’ government an “illegitimate government.”

“BJP government has betrayed the people. You have to prove majority,” said the Sena’s Ramdas Kadam.

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