Jaipur, Jan 31 (IANS) Rajasthan Assembly witnessed a war of words between Speaker C.P. Joshi and Deputy Leader of Opposition Rajendra Rathore over the issue of a breach of privilege motion brought against the latter.
Independent MLA Sayam Lodha, who is also an advisor to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, moved a motion of breach of privilege against Rathore, who had filed the PIL in the High Court in reference to resignations of 91 MLAs who resigned on September 25.
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The Speaker allowed Lodha to speak on the breach of privilege motion, but Rathore objected, kicking off a spat.
Lodha had questioned ‘how can the High Court dictate to the assembly’, when Rathore objected to his statement.
At this, the Speaker said: “You cannot challenge my authority. The House is governed by rules and if you are a senior, it does not mean that the House should be run according to you.”
“You can’t dictate to me,” Rathore said, citing the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business of the Assembly.
Joshi responded: “Under Rule 157, the complete process of bringing a breach of privilege motion has been given. I have the right to speak under these rules. It is under these rules that I have allowed Sanyam Lodha to speak.”
But, Rathore continued to argue, saying that he is directly giving permission to raise the issue of breach of privilege, and they should also get a chance to speak on this.
When Rathore asked to discuss the rules on the process of bringing a proposal for violation of privilege, the Speaker interrupted him and said that he could not give approval.
But Rathore went on, saying: “You cannot cover up the internal fight of the ruling party by doing this. The decision will come out in the High Court on February 13 and what do you want to prove by giving a decisions in bits and pieces on privilege motion?”
As Rathore cited the rules, Joshi said: “I am not illiterate, I know all the rules. The house will run according to these rules only. The House will not run on your saying. When he cited Rule 161, the Speaker said that “kangaroo jumping” does not work, and asked to look at Rule 160. “Mr. Rathore, being half literate doesn’t help, one has to study completely.”
He said that Rule 160 provides that the Speaker can allow a breach of privilege motion, and after this, if he had any objection, he will be allowed to speak.
“Right now people do not know how to bring a breach of privilege motion. Rajendra Rathore says that there is no proposal for breach of privilege. So I have allowed the breach of privilege motion, it will be discussed further. Everyone will get time to speak.”
Meanwhile, Lodha said: “Will we work to weaken our own house by sitting in this house? Will the Rajasthan High Court dictate to the Assembly? Will we go to the High Court if the answer to our question does not come in the Assembly?”
“If a case is not decided in the High Court, will the Assembly be asked to take a decision? If the Assembly cannot say this, how can the High Court dictate to the Assembly? Rajendra Rathore’s conduct brought disgrace to the House.”