Kerala governor asks opposition to behave, Left MLAs walk out

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 5 (IANS) The Left opposition on Friday walked out of the Kerala assembly ahead of Governor P. Sathasivam’s customary address, but not before the latter had asked the protesting members to behave or leave the house.

As Sathasivam stood up to read out his address on the opening day of the first assembly session of this year, he saw the opposition members in a mood to protest.

The opposition was demanding Chief Minister Oommen Chandy’s resignation over the solar and bar scams in Kerala.

Sathasivam, a former chief justice of India, paused for a while before telling the opposition that they had shown their democratic protest and now it was his turn to speak.

“Mr (V.S.) Achuthanandan, you have raised your democratic protest. You should now allow me to do my job. You have conveyed your protest to the people,” said Sathasivam.

With the opposition in an unrelenting mood, the governor then addressed the deputy leader of the opposition Kodiyeri Balakrishnan: “Balakrishnan, this might happen to you also; so better you sit quiet or leave. This is my constitutional duty. Kindly read the constitution. I have full energy and I will read it slowly,” the governor said.

As the Left legislators remained in a combative mood, Sathasivam pointed out that the entire nation was watching their conduct on television.

“I am aware that this protest is not against me, but against the government. Better you sit quiet or leave the house,” the governor again said.

The entire opposition thereafter walked out amid slogan-shouting.

Sathasivam read the 78-page speech in around 150 minutes, even as the opposition MLAs staged a sit-in outside the assembly.

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