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Opposition leader Manik Sarkar said their voices were forcibly suppressed in the House and they could not stay in the House to legitimise the proceedings
Opposition leader Manik Sarkar said their voices were forcibly suppressed in the House and they could not stay in the House to legitimise the proceedings |EastMojo image
TRIPURA

Tripura House passes ESMA bill amid walkout by opposition CPI-M

Inaugural day of 10th session of legislative assembly witnesses stormy start with opposition leaders condemning current law-and-order situation in state

Chandan Panday

Chandan Panday

Agartala: The inaugural day of the 10th session of the Tripura Legislative Assembly witnessed a stormy start as opposition members of the CPI-M walked out of House opposing the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) and condemning the current law-and-order situation in state.

Former PWD and finance minister Badal Choudhury raised a demand for adjournment motion for discussion on the law-and-order situation of the state but Speaker Rebati Mohan Das said no adjournment motion could be admitted.

The opposition leaders, including MLAs Sudhan Das and former minister Bhanulal Saha, kept on raising the demand for adjournment motion of law-and-order situation.

Replying their demand, MLA Sudip Roy Barman said this issue would be raised on Monday, as the day is scheduled for questions on the home department.

He also took a dig by saying there should be a comparison of the law-and-order situation between the one-year-old BJP rule and the tenures of the Left Front government.

Later, the opposition leader, Manik Sarkar, stood up and said that their voices were forcibly suppressed in the House and they could not stay in the House to legitimise the proceedings and they walked out of the House. However, they returned to take part in the proceedings.

In the second half of the assembly the session, The Tripura Essential Services Maintenance Bill 2019 was moved by chief minister Biplab Kumar Deb.

Opposing the ESMA bill, former CM Manik Sarkar said the government should think before introducing the bill because this bill would suppress the opinion of the government employees and they are also a citizen of the country and they may not like many decisions of the government.

Later, the opposition members walked out for the second time and rejoined the House after 15 minutes.

Earlier, on August 27, state minister for Parliamentary affairs and cabinet spokesperson, Ratan Lal Nath told reporters, “The ESMA, an act of Parliament, had been approved in a recently held state Cabinet. The ESMA Act is a weapon for the state government to stop any group of government employees from organising any movements like strike and cease of works which obstruct providing essential service to the common masses.”

Deputy Speaker of Biswabandhu Sen placed the Bill for a vote and it was passed by voice vote.

In the 60-member House in Tripura, the BJP has 36 seats, its ally Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) has eight seats and the opposition CPI-M has the remaining 16 seats.

The ongoing assembly will continue till September 3. The Bills which are to be moved are the Prisoners (Tripura Second Amendment Bill), 2019; The Tripura Professions, Trades, Callings and Employments Taxation (Second Amendment) Bill, 2019; The Salaries, Allowances, Pension and other Benefits of the Ministers, Speaker, Deputy Speaker, Leader of Opposition, Government Chief Whip and the Members of the Legislative Assembly (Tripura) Bill.