Assemblies have turned into battlefields: Himachal CM

Hamirpur (Himachal Pradesh), Oct 10 (IANS) Legislative assemblies have been converted into an sphere of battle rather than debate, and “making remarks and shouting slogans” in institutions of democracy was a new practice, Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh said on Saturday.

“There should be decorum in the assembly and making remarks and shouting slogans in the assembly is a new practice by the present opposition (BJP),” he said at a function here, the hometown of Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal.

He said former chief minister Dhumal had changed the ethical values in the assembly and advised BJP leaders to refrain from such activities.

Virbhadra Singh, who has been in politics since 1962, was here to address a function of NGO Sarv Kalyankari Sanstha, which is headed by former legislator Rajinder Rana.

Praising former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the chief minister said the raid on the residence of a sitting chief minister was a blot in the state’s political history.

The raids were initiated by BJP leaders in coordination with central leaders on the day of marriage of his daughter, he added.

“I need not to worry of any raid or inquiry as my income tax returns are in various stages with the Income Tax tribunal and in the Delhi High Court,” he added.

Virbhadra Singh’s houses in the hilly state and in Delhi were raided on September 26 by the CBI in a disproportionate assets case against him and his family.

Referring to his acquittal in a three-and-half-year-old corruption case in December 2012, he said the case had exposed the intention of the BJP leaders, and the Supreme Court gave him a clean chit.

The chief minister said he was not against the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA), but it should get registered under the Cooperative Societies Act and should function democratically.

The HPCA is headed by BJP Lok Sabha member and Dhumal’s son Anurag Thakur.

Virbhadra Singh said the dirty blame game started by the Dhumals was not in better interest of the state and the welfare of people.

“I won’t allow the property of the state to be misused till I am alive and it is because of this the Dhumals were uncomfortable and were trying to oust me from politics,” he added.

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