Pandemonium in House over PSA detention

Pandemonium broke out in the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday when MLA Langate Er Rashid took on the Government for slapping Public Safety Act (PSA) on a Muslim leader from Jammu, which led to exchange of heated arguments between him and the BJP lawmakers.
Pandemonium in House over PSA detention
Photo: Mubashir Khan/GK

Pandemonium broke out in the Legislative Assembly on Wednesday when MLA Langate Er Rashid took on the Government for slapping Public Safety Act (PSA) on a Muslim leader from Jammu, which led to exchange of heated arguments between him and the BJP lawmakers. Rashid was marshaled out from the House on directions of the Speaker while NC and Congress later sought answer from the Government on the detention.

As soon as proceedings of the House began, Rashid created uproar in the House over arrest of Syed Shabir Ahmad Shah, president Muslim Development Forum. Seeking his release, Rashid alleged that Muslim community in Jammu region was terrorized and targeted by communal and fascist forces.

"He (Shabir) is paying a price for organizing a funeral prayer meeting for late Chief Minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed? You should slap PSA on terrorists involved in killing of Ishtiyaq Choudary and Zahid and those who resorted to violence against Gujjar community in Samba," Rashid said.

As Rashid continued with his protests, the Speaker remarked: "It is used against anti-national elements."

"You have handed over Jammu to RSS. You have left Muslims of Jammu at the mercy of communal forces," Rashid said while pointing to PDP ministers and legislators sitting in the House.

As Minister for Law and Rural Development Abdul Haq Khan intervened, asking lawmakers to maintain sanctity and honour of the House, Rashid interrupted him by saying, " Aap Kya Bakwas Karte Ho. (What rubbish you are talking)."

As Rashid continued with disruptions, independent lawmaker from Udhampur Pawan Gupta, angrily shouted at him, "Shut up."  "You should shut your mouth," Rashid retorted. 

Amid commotion in the House, Rashid and Pawan exchanged heated arguments for 2-3 minutes.

In the meantime, BJP legislators also got up and countered Rashid over his anti-BJP remarks.

"He is repeatedly disrupting proceedings of the House. He should be thrown out  from the House," they demanded and entered into heated arguments with him.

With disruptions continuing in the House, the Speaker warned Rashid to behave or else he would be evicted from the House.

"I have no alternative than to evict you from the House. You are repeatedly disrupting proceedings of the House," the Speaker told him.

The Speaker's repeated warning failed to restore order in the House.

"Don't communalize the situation. Don't divide the House," Tarigami remarked in the backdrop of BJP-Rashid verbal duel.

He also asked Government to come up with a statement over the detention.

"You (Government) should respond to him (Rashid)," Tarigami asked treasury benches.

Later, Rashid was marshaled out from the House.  Soon, NC, Congress too demanded answer from Government over the PSA detention.

Moments after Rashid's exit from the House, NC lawmaker Akbar Lone questioned the Speaker's move to stop Ali Muhammad Sagar from raising the detention issue.

"This is not the way to behave with a lawmaker," Lone told the Speaker.

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