April 2000 News

Uproar in J-K Houses over police firing

4 April 2000
Indian Express

Jammu: Both the Houses of the state legislature were adjourned today without transacting any business even as Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah ordered inquiry by a retired Supreme Court judge into the police firing, which resulted in the death of seven people and injuries to many others in Anantnag yesterday. The Congress and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) MLAs staged walk-out in protest against the firing incident. They criticised the Government for its failure to protect the lives of innocents. As soon as the Assembly proceedings began, members of the ruling National Conference raised slogans against the police firing and demanded the House to be adjourned in support of the bereaved families. They were joined by the entire Opposition, including the Bharatiya Janata Party, Congress Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Panthers Party. However, the BJP members later went to their seats and kept quiet. The lone CPM member in the House, M.Y. Tarigami said, ''Masoomon ka katale-aam band karo (stop massacre of innocents).'' Shouting slogans against the Government, he staged walkout. Congress MLAs Balbir Singh, Lal Singh and C. Dorje staged walkout saying that it is an administrative failure and the culprits should be booked immediately. Pandemonium reigned in the House as all the MLAs in the House stood up shouting slogans. The NC legislators left their seats and blocked the alleys, particularly the passage from the entrance to well of the House. Repeated efforts by Speaker Abdul Ahad Vakil to pacify the agitated members failed. ''The Chief Minister will make a statement in the House,'' he said. The members, however, did not allow any proceedings for about 15 minutes. Later, the were persuaded by Deputy Speaker Ghulam Haider Malik and some senior members to calm down and resume their seats. Farooq gave details of the yesterday''s firing on the procession at Brakpora in Anantnag. He said a high-level inquiry has been ordered into the incident, besides reshuffle in the district administration. No guilty will spared, added Farooq. However, following Farooq''s statement. Law Minister P L Handoo urged the Speaker that in keeping with the sentiments of the members, the House should be adjourned till tomorrow.


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