VIJAYAWADA: Leader of Opposition N Chandrababu Naidu and 12 other TDP members were suspended from the Assembly session for a day after they stormed into the podium, stalling the proceedings on the first day of the Winter session on Monday. For for the first time in his long political career, Naidu stormed into the Well of the House and squatted on the floor in front of the Speaker’s Chair. The incident happened when the House took up a short discussion on agriculture and cooperation.
TDP member Nimmala Ramanaidu raised the issue of relief for farmers due to the damage caused by Cyclone Nivar. Intervening, Minister for Agriculture Kurasala Kannababu said that the enumeration is underway and preliminary estimates pegged the extent of crop loss at 6.93 lakh hectares. At that time, Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy said that one should have some sense while speaking. Officials have been told to enumerate the crop losses by December 15 and provide compensation by December 31 in the form of input subsidy, he added. Jagan further said his government took a historic decision to give input subsidy within a month of the crop loss and procure discoloured and germinated paddy from farmers in a graded MPS system.
“Though our minister clearly explained it, they (Opposition) are not listening,” he asserted, and remarked that members of the Opposition have the upper part of their head empty. Taking objection to the Chief Minister’s comment and gesture, Naidu sought the permission of Deputy Speaker Kona Raghupathi, who was in the Chair, to speak.
His request was declined as his party member Ramanaidu was speaking. All TDP MLAs stood up and demanded that Naidu be allowed to speak. As permission was not given, a visibly angry Naidu rushed to the podium and squatted on the floor in protest.
Taking objection to this, the Chief Minister said the Opposition leader is intervening and trying to disrupt the proceedings even while his own party member is speaking. “He resorts to rowdyism and he himself squats before the podium as if injustice was done to him,” he remarked.
Later in the evening, stating that he was forced to protest at the Speaker’s Podium for the first time and also suspended from the House for the first time in his four-decade-long political career, Naidu said he did all this for the sake of farmers. Calling Jagan a “fake CM”, the Opposition leader said the YSRC government had thrown all traditions of the Assembly to the wind and did not care to take up a meaningful debate on the woes of the farmers. “They came to power by a fluke and will exit the same way,” he predicted.