Odisha assembly stalled over special category status issue



Bhubaneswar: Odisha Assembly today witnessed pandemonium with opposition Congress protesting the speaker's refusal to allow a debate on the demand for special category status to the state and treasury bench raising voice against alleged gang-rape of an Odia woman in Delhi.

The issue of Odisha's demand for special category state status was raised by leader of opposition Bhupinder Singh of Congress as soon as the house assembled for the day after a six-day break.

The opposition members rushed to the well and strongly protested refusal by the speaker, Pradip Kumar Amat, to accept an adjournment notice on the special category state status by the Congress members.

While Congress members were staging demonstration in the well demanding acceptance of their notice for a debate on the issue, ruling BJD MLAs were on their feet condemning gang-rape of an Odia working woman in Delhi.

Unable to run the house, Amat adjourned the house twice till 3 pm. "The state government is avoiding a debate on the issue of special category status for Odisha. BJD Government's demand in this regard is simply confined to writing letters," Singh said outside the house.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kalpataru Das, however, said the government has no objection to hold discussion on the issue. "The issue should be debated in different format and not through an adjournment motion," Das said.

Slamming the state government, Congress maintained that its earlier notice to move a motion for passage of unanimous resolution in the assembly had been ignored.

"My notice to bring a motion on the special category state status issue on March 14, was not taken up," Congress Chief Whip Prasad Harichandan alleged.

PTI