Lucknow: The Question Hour was washed out in the Uttar Pradesh legislature on Monday as agitated Samajwadi Party members stalled proceedings in both Houses over the issue of alleged threat call to their party chief Akhilesh Yadav.
The Samajwadi Party (SP) members raised slogans leading to adjournment of proceedings in the state assembly for 30 minutes, which was extended for the entire Question Hour by Speaker Hriday Narain Dixit.
Similar scenes were witnessed in the legislative council over the threat which Yadav had earlier said he received over the phone.
As soon as the state assembly met for the day, Leader of the Opposition Ram Govind Chaudhary of the Samajwadi Party raised the issue demanding immediate discussion on the matter, but the Chair did not allow the same.
At this, the SP members got furious. Sensing their mood, the Speaker adjourned the House proceedings till Zero Hour.
When the House reassembled, Chaudhary again raised the issue and said it was a serious matter. Responding to his concerns, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Suresh Kumar Khanna said Yadav had been provided ''Z-Plus'' category security which comprises 182 security personnel led by an Additional SP rank officer, circle officer, six inspectors, 14 sub-inspectors besides CoBRA commando jawans.
Usually 56 security personnel guard an ''Z-Plus'' protectee, but in his (Yadav''s) case, 182 personnel are posted, the minister said, adding that it was not a security breach but a "trivial" incident.
Akhilesh Yadav had recently claimed at a meeting that he had received a threat call and a message on his phone from a BJP leader. He made the allegation after a youth disrupted his meeting, shouting ''Jai Shri Ram''.
Opposition parties have been raising the issue of law and order in the state in the Budget session of the state legislature.
The matter had its echo in the Upper House as well, with the Question Hour becoming a casualty amidst the din created by the SP members over alleged threat to their national president.
As soon as the legislative council met in the morning, SP leader Ahmad Hasan raised the issue and alleged that security of Akhilesh Yadav was reduced and the BJP was trying to threaten the opposition.
When leader of the House and Deputy Chief Minister Dinesh Sharma sought to know on which rule they were trying to raise the matter, SP members rushed to the Well of the House, raising anti-government slogans.
Council Chairman Ramesh Yadav adjourned the House for half-an-hour. The session was later extended due to which the Question Hour could not take place.
Opposition Samajwadi Party, the BSP and the Congress also staged a walkout in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly as they accused the BJP-led state government of being "insensitive" towards Dalits following the recent caste clashes in Mangta village where 25 people were injured.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, however, dismissed the allegation and said every incident should not be seen through a "political prism" and local disputes should be resolved "locally".
The matter was raised during Zero Hour by BSP leader Lalji Verma, who alleged that the state government was insensitive towards Dalits and demanded compensation to the victims.
Congress leader Aradhana Mishra Mona also joined him and termed the incident as serious.
Twenty-five people were injured in clashes that broke out between two groups in Mangta village here in Kanpur Dehat district on February 13.
Rubbishing the opposition charges, Adityanath said, "The incident arose from a local dispute among villagers" and advised the opposition members not to "add fuel to fire" and allow peace to prevail.
"Every incident should not be seen through a political prism. The administration officials are camping in the village and the government is committed to provide security to the people. Timely action was taken by the police and arrests were also made," the chief minister said. He also said compensation was promptly paid to those affected as per the provisions under the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, and there was no need for opposition members to recommend doles for the victims. Dissatisfied with the reply, the opposition parties staged a walkout from the House. PTI