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BJP MLA Apologizes For “Offensive Statement” In Odisha Assembly Over Triple Talaq Context

02 August 2019

Debashish Maharana

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Bhubaneswar: A day after his allegedly objectionable statement in the context of Triple Talaq discussion during Zero Hour in Odisha Assembly that stirred a hornet’s nest and ignited vehement protest by both Congress and ruling BJD members, senior BJP MLA-cum-Deputy Leader of Opposition Bishnu Charan Sethy today duly apologized putting rest to the grueling controversy.

The offensive statement during the Zero Hour against the women of a particular community had sparked off uproarious scene in the House as the irate members of both Congress and BJD had demanded the ruling of Speaker Surya Narayan Patro for immediately expunging the allegedly insulting words from the record the Assembly.

Even the incident had compelled the Speaker to adjourn the House repeatedly yesterday because of the pandemonium.

Speaker had assured the protesting members to examine the statement and pass his ruling accordingly.

Soon after the Assembly session began today, Congress members trooped into the well of the House and created ruckus following which the Speaker had to adjourn the proceedings till 11.30 am and convened an all-party meeting.

When the House re-assembled at Zero Hour, Deputy Leader of Opposition Bishnu Charan Sethy rose and duly apologized. Soon after, Speaker gave his ruling on the contentious issue ordering that the objectionable statement must be expunged from the record of the House. He also ruled that it should also not be published by media.   

Yesterday, Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) president Niranjan Patnaik had strongly condemned the statement and demanded the BJP MLA’s apology. The party also threatened to stage dharna during the session till he had not apologized.       

In his media reactions outside the House today, Deputy Leader of Opposition Bishnu Charan Sethy said, “I have already stated that I have quoted it and it isn’t my personal statement. However, we have to take some matters into deep consideration and introspection.”

“Hence, we expressed our apology in the House,” humbly rued the BJP lawmaker.

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Bishnu Charan Sethy, Senior BJP MLA, Odisha