GUWAHATI, Feb 4 � The impasse in the State Assembly over the multi-crore rupee NC Hills Autonomous Council (NCHAC) scam persisted for the fourth day today with the Opposition continuing with its uproar. But the salient feature of today�s developments in the Assembly was the ruling of the Speaker to suspend Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator Prasanta Phukan for his playing the cymbal.
The cymbal episode added to the heat generated during the past three days with members of both the Treasury and the Opposition benches rushing to the well and almost coming to blows, going beyond the verbal exchanges.
The Speaker had to adjourn the House for about an hour�till 10 am� soon after it met for the day at 9 am. As soon as the Speaker announced that the proceedings of the House was to begin with the Question Hour, Leader of the Opposition Prafulla Kumar Mahanta reminded him of the demand of the Opposition to remove the accused Ministers and to hand over all the departments of the NCHAC to the CBI for investigation.
It was sharply retorted by Minister Rockybul Hussain that the Treasury Bench is prepared for a discussion on the issue. But it failed to pacify the Opposition members and Prasanta Phukan was seen playing the cymbal in tune with the slogans of the other Opposition members and the Treasury Bench members were also seen making efforts with equal vigour to shout down the Opposition members. The Speaker was thus forced to adjourn the House at 9-05 am.
This followed a heated exchange between the members of the Treasury Bench and the Opposition Bench and Ministers Himanta Biswa Sarma and Rockybul Hussain threatened action against Phukan.
When the House reassembled at 10 am, the Congress members were seen rushing to the well demanding action against Phukan and the Speaker announced that Phukan has been suspended for the offence of committing an unprecedented and �indecent act� (abhabya acharan) from the Assembly for the rest of the session till February 8.
This made the Opposition members too to rush to the well and demand revocation of the ruling. The situation reached such a pass that the Speaker had to adjourn the House once again at 10-05 am, till 11-25 am.
The House reassembled at 11-25 am and this time too, the Congress members rushed to the well and demanded expulsion of Phukan. The Opposition members also rushed to the well and demanded revocation of the suspension order. The Opposition members also resented deployment of the Marshals to evict Phukan and they demanded withdrawal of Marshal. They were also heard condemning fascism. On the other hand, the ruling party members shouted slogans like BJP and AIUDF are brothers.
They were also heard shouting that the issue of salary of the Government employees is very much linked with the normal functioning of the session. At this moment Speaker Tanka Bahadur Rai was heard repeatedly asking Prasanta Phukan to leave the House, but in vain.
During the moment, Independent Member Jiten Gogoi was seen carrying a fire extinguisher to the utter dismay of many of the onlookers. He was, however, persuaded to hand it over to the Assembly staff.
All such clamorous activities of the members of both the ruling party and the Opposition led to the adjournment of the House for the third time in the day at 11-35 am.