Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Guillotine is a parliamentary practice. But a government escaping accountability in financial matters entirely by the means of guillotine itself is indicative of deficiency in management of democracy. It is a matter of shame that the Orissa government under Naveen Patnaik has failed to overcome its deficiency and has failed to respect the democratic emphasis on discussion than guillotine.

From commencement till date the Orissa Legislative Assembly has not been able to transact any tangible business as the government side has kept pressed a Motion on use of Hirakud water against a Motion proposed on the same subject ahead of the treasury benches and Speaker Maheswar Mohanty elected from the treasury benches to the coveted post has not acted upon the Motion proposed by the Opposition even though this precedes the official proposal.

It is clear and unambiguous that the treasury benches have been strangulating the Assembly and they perhaps do not want the House to proceed so that they can escape accountability. Now with the guillotine they have succeeded.

Success of the treasury benches in escaping accountability can have no other meaning than defeat of democracy.

An Assembly that has been hijacked as such by the government of the State to a stage where accountability cannot be clamped on it, has no meaning in living any more. It is a seer loss of time and money of the State.

So the Governor should appreciate that the current Assembly is incorrigible and hence, he should intervene in order to set it right. He should not remain a mute witness to strangulation of the Assembly by a government that he heads statutorily. He should summon the Chief minister forthwith and ask him to withdraw the official Motion nailed on the House subsequent to the Motion of the Opposition and to appropriately discuss the Motion first notified in order to develop a democratic consensus on the same and thereby to help the House proceed with normal business.

If the Chief Minister fails to comply with his advice, he should act under Article 174 (2) (b) of the Constitution to dissolve the ailing Assembly so that a healthier one may take birth.

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