Thiruvananthapuram: MLAs TV Rajesh and James Mathew was suspended from Assembly proceedings for 2 days. The Opposition protesting against this went on a sit-in inside the Assembly. The suspension was given not for the manhandling incident that happened on Friday but for the sudden outburst against the speaker.
It all started when the Speaker G Karthikeyan called a meeting of the two MLAs and discussed the incident of the attack. He asked the two MLAs to offer an apology for manhandling a watch and ward staff and a consensus was reached there.
At 8 a.m. Monday,Karthikeyan began a marathon peace talks with the rival fronts that went on till 1.40 p.m.'Maybe what happened was not done purposely but the two legislators have apologised for their misbehaviour,' said Karthikeyan.
Hearing this, Mathew was on his feet and was seen shouting to the speaker that they had not apologised and what the speaker had said was against what was earlier decided.
Chief Minister Oommen Chandy then got up and read a statement that in the light of what had just happened, the two legislators who questioned the speaker must be suspended. The resolution was adopted.
Opposition members were up on their feet and started shouting slogans and trooped to the well of the house as the speaker rushed through the proceedings of the day and adjourned the house.
Government chief whip P.C. George told newsmen later that what had happened in the house was unbecoming.
'It was really unbecoming,' he said. 'All the issues were resolved through the marathon talks since today morning. With James taking a stand like this, Rajesh also stood up and challenged the speaker and, hence, they were suspended.'
The opposition continued to remain in the house even after the adjournment.
Former food minister and Communist Party of India legislative party leader C. Divakaran said the suspension was a violation of the agreement reached.
'It is most unfortunate; the suspension came as a surprise to all of us because that was not what was decided at the talks,' said Divakaran