Rajasthan Crisis: Guv Sets Terms For Assembly Session

Rajasthan Governor Kalraj Mishra has said that Raj Bhavan never had an intention “not to call” the assembly session and has asked the Ashok Gehlot government to deliberate on three points including 21-day notice period for convening session and maintaining social distancing norms.

A Raj Bhavan release also referred to certain other conditions to be followed if Gehlot government, which is facing a crisis due to differences in the state Congress, wants to seek a trust vote.

The Raj Bhavan said a proposal was received from the state government to convene assembly session from July 31 and the Governor has said that the session should be called according to the constitutional provisions.

The release said that the statements from the state government make it clear that it wants to bring a trust vote but there is no mention of it in the proposal sent for convening the session.

It also said that if the state government wants to bring trust vote, there can be a basis to call the session at a short notice.

The Raj Bhavan said as conditions at present were extraordinary, the state government has been asked to give a letter again after acting on three issues.

It said that the assembly session should be called after giving a 21-day notice to give equal opportunity to all members. The release noted that important social and political issues can be discussed through online mode as in the Supreme Court and High Court in the wake of COVID-19.

“In case, confidence motion is moved in the Assembly then proceedings should be done in the presence of chief secretary, Parliamentary Affairs Department. The proceedings should be recorded and the trust vote should be carried out with a button,” the release said, adding that the proceedings should be telecast live.

The release said it should be clarified that if the Assembly session is convened then how social distancing norms would be followed.

“Is there any arrangement in which 200 MLAs and 1000 officials do not face the threat of infection. And if anyone gets an infection, how to prevent its spread among others?” the release asked.

It said the assembly does not have a sitting arrangement for 200 MLAs and 1,000 officials by following the social distancing norms.

The release said it is the constitutional duty of the Governor that in such difficult circumstances, the life of more than 1200 people cannot be put to risk by calling a session without any special urgency.

“Governor Kalraj Mishra has, giving advice under Article 174 of Constitution, given directions to the state government to take action for convening the session. He has said that Raj Bhavan never had an intention not to call the session,” the release said.

Earlier, Rajasthan Governor’s Secretariat had said the state government had presented a proposal to convene the session of the Assembly at very short notice on the night of July 23. The paper was analysed and legal experts were consulted over it.

It had said 21-day notice is required for the session to be called according to the normal procedures.

Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday said the Congress party will approach the President and, if required, will also stage a protest outside the Prime Minister’s residence in connection with the political situation in Rajasthan.

He had earlier said alleged that the Governor was not calling the Assembly session due to “pressure from the top”.

Rajasthan Congress is in turmoil after simmering differences between Pilot and Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot came out in the open. Pilot was removed as the Deputy Chief Minister and the state unit chief of Congress.

The Congress has accused the BJP of indulging in horse-trading to bring down the Gehlot government. The BJP has rejected the allegations. (ANI)

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