The one-day Haryana Assembly winter session, which begins at Chandigarh on Friday, is likely to be a stormy affair, with the opposition set to corner the BJP-led government on several issues, including law and order, farmers plight and the Sutlej-Yamuna Link canal.
Opposition parties have objected to the holding of a brief session, claiming that they will not get enough time to raise issues of public importance.
However, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar told reporters at Chandigarh on Thursday that the session had been convened due to some important legislative business, including passage of some bills, and that the duration had been fixed after consultation with the opposition.
“Due to some important legislative business including some bills, which need to be passed within a specific time-frame, the session has been convened,” Khattar said.
“Many of our opposition friends had the reservation when the session was to continue on December 31 (New Year’s Eve) as well after which its duration was decided with their consultation,” he said.
Khattar said the present BJP government had started the practice of convening three sessions during a year.
“When we came to power, we had said we will have at least three sessions as against the earlier practice of having them twice a year. From 2005-09, 12 sessions with 70 sittings were held and from 2009-14, 11 sessions with 56 sittings were held.
“During our four years of rule, 12 sessions with 71 sittings have been held, and we still have one year remaining,” he said.
Former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said his party will raise issues pertaining to law and order, farmers plight and corruption among others.
Objecting to the short duration of the session, Hooda said, “First they convened a session for two days, which has been curtailed to a day now, which indicates that they have read the writing on the wall and decided to pack up.”
They know people are fed up with their misrule and want to oust them from power, he alleged.
“Curtailing the session to one-day means that the BJP government cannot face the House,” Hooda said.
Former Haryana Assembly speaker and Congress leader Kuldeep Sharma said inside the Assembly “the government knows it is going to be under maximum pressure because they have to answer on every issue, which is why they are running away”.
Opposition INLD, which will be facing its first session after a split in the party, said they will raise the SYL, law and order and farmers’ issues in the House.
It will be interesting to see whom the three INLD MLAs, including Naina Chautala, who have not resigned from their parent party but are part of the recently-floated Jannayak Janata
Party will support when the issues are raised by INLD members under Leader of Opposition Abhay Singh Chautala.
On when the bypolls to the Jind Assembly segment will be held, Khattar said these have to be held before February 25, 2019, after the seat fell vacant.
It is up to the Election Commission to announce the poll date.”Whenever these polls are declared, we are more than ready,” he said.
The Jind Assembly seat had fallen vacant after main opposition Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) MLA, Hari Chand Middha, had passed away on August 26. PTI