Agartala: The Tripura legislative assembly will be in session before September 23 in the present legislative assembly building maintaining social distancing said Speaker Rebati Mohan Das here on Tuesday.
Speaking with reporters, Das said he along with the law and parliamentary affairs minister Ratan Lal Nath on Tuesday inspected the state legislative assembly building to review if monsoon session can be held within the existing building.
Tripura Legislative assembly has a seating capacity up to 100 for 60 legislators.
“We have observed that the assembly session can be held by maintaining social distancing within this assembly building. Since we have enough seats available, there would be no problem in maintaining social distancing”, Das said.
He also said that the members of the legislative assembly are getting infected with the virus. Therefore the assembly session must be held before September 23 next.
“The assembly has to be in session before September 23 as per customs. The dates are first proposed and fixed by the state cabinet following which the speaker upon giving his approval forwards it to the Tripura governor. The Governor announces the confirmed date”, Das added.
The five-day budget session was cut to two days due to the outbreak of coronavirus on March 20. The last assembly session was called off soon after the budget was passed in the assembly.
The business advisory committee (BAC) which comprises members from both Left Front and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislatures will meet to decide on the number of business days of the assembly.
“Many state assemblies were held maintaining social distancing and limited the number of legislators in the session to contain the spread of the virus. We will hold the session within time; however, the final decision of the number of business days would be taken by the BAC members”, Das said.
I feel that the opposition leaders will cooperate in holding the assembly session for a short duration. In case they request to extend days then we will have to do that, Das opined.
Earlier on August 22, law and parliamentary minister Ratan Lal Nath inspected the Heritage Park gallery in Agartala and said that the assembly session in many states had been held outside the assembly building with a set of restrictions.
The minister said that it is possible to hold the assembly here at the gallery of Heritage Park with arrangements of shed and chair to sit and cordless mic for the legislators.
Tripura legislative assembly has a total of 60 seats, of which 36 MLAs are from BJP, 8 from IPFT and 16 members are from opposition CPIM. The government may also consider following the pattern of Assam Legislative Assembly and holding assembly with 50 percent legislators.