GUWAHATI, Dec 7 - The Winter Session of the Assembly began on a stormy note today, with Speaker Pranab Gogoi suspending all the BJP members present in the House after they created a ruckus demanding a discussion on the State�s law-and-order situation during the Question Hour.
When the Speaker refused to allow the discussion citing rules and procedures, the agitated BJP members rushed to the Well of the House, shouting slogans and insisting vociferously that the discussion be allowed. Marshals had to be deployed to get the members out of the House.
The BJP members totalling 12 � including seven who had recently defected from the Congress to the BJP � were suspended for the rest of the session.
An unrelenting Speaker later even rejected a request from Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi who wanted the suspension of the �original� BJP members (excluding the nine members who had defected from the Congress) to be revoked.
�I have my own jurisdiction and nobody can interfere with it. The MLAs have been suspended for the rest of the Session, and the suspension stays. I have the responsibility to ensure that the Assembly functions normally and as per rules and procedures, and if anybody disrupts the functioning, I have the power to act. I cannot allow anybody to gain political mileage from the proceedings inside the House,� Speaker Gogoi said.
Earlier, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Rakibul Hussain had requested the Deputy Speaker to convey to the Speaker the request from the Chief Minister that the suspension order regarding the �original� BJP MLAs be revoked. Hussain, however, made it clear that the appeal was not for the nine �duplicate� MLAs who had deserted the Congress recently.
The BJP later deplored the Speaker�s action in suspending the BJP members for the rest of the session as undemocratic, saying that it set a �disturbing precedent� in the House.
Spl Correspondent adds from New Delhi: Describing the suspension of the BJP MLAs as an example of the �jungle raj� prevailing in Assam, the BJP on Monday said that it would not succumb to the �pressure tactics� of the Tarun Gogoi Government.
Reacting to the suspension of the party MLAs, BJP leader Syed Shahnawaj Hussain said that the BJP would form the next government in Assam by overthrowing the Congress Government.
The BJP spokesman, however, declined to comment on reports of any possible alliance between the BJP and the AGP.