" Tumko jaan se maar denge. Chamri chhil denge. Tum apne aapko samajhta kya hai? Tumko dekh lenge! (I will kill you. Skin you. What do you think of yourself? I will see you)"

By Dev Raj in Patna
  • Published 17.03.16
Brahampur MLA Shambhu Nath Yadav outside the Assembly on Wednesday. (Right below) Lal Babu Prasad Gupta, the BJP MLA from Chiraiya in East Champaran district. Pictures by Nagendra Kumar Singh

Patna, March 16: " Tumko jaan se maar denge. Chamri chhil denge. Tum apne aapko samajhta kya hai? Tumko dekh lenge! (I will kill you. Skin you. What do you think of yourself? I will see you)"

This threat from Shambhu Nath Yadav, RJD MLA from Brahampur in Buxar, directed at Lal Babu Prasad Gupta, BJP MLA from Chiraiya in East Champaran, sparked uproar in the Assembly today with veterans bemoaning falling standards of legislative discourse.

The House was debating the transport department budget for 2016-17. The Opposition was insisting on a debate on the health department instead. It escalated into the Opposition alleging that the ruling parties were always trying to shield health minister Tej Pratap Yadav. Lal was among the most vocal Opposition MLAs.

It was then that Shambhu Nath - who had earlier worked as a bodyguard of party chief Lalu Prasad - let loose.

NDA legislators led by Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar immediately lodged a strong protest with Ram Narayan Mandal, who was officiating in place of Speaker Vijay Kumar Chaudhary.

"The statement by the Brahampur MLA is shameful and condemnable," Prem said. "He should immediately apologise so that the proceedings of the House can continue smoothly. We will not allow the House to function without it."

With Shambhu refusing to oblige, NDA legislators trooped into the Well, alleging that the government was shielding ruling party MLAs indulging in crimes ranging from eve-teasing and kidnapping to rape.

"The deterioration in law and order in the state has started reflecting in the House also. We will not tolerate this," Prem said.

The House was adjourned for 15 minutes. When it convened again, the BJP legislators persisted with their apology demand. It forced the 51-year-old debutant RJD MLA, considered a muscleman in his area, to give in.

"I apologise twice if I have hurt anybody with my words, but the BJP members should desist from making unnecessary comments," Shambhu Nath said.

After that, the Assembly functioned normally with budgets related to transport, health, minority welfare, information and public relations departments passed together by the guillotine method. (See Page 8)

"Such a thing has never happened in the Assembly. No MLA could dare say such things earlier. This is unimaginable," former chief minister Jagannath Mishra told The Telegraph. "It shows that leadership has become weak in the state and legislative decorum is being broken."

Citing the case against rape-accused Nawada RJD MLA Raj Ballabh Prasad, who evaded arrest for a month, Mishra added: "It shows that the parties have lost their grip on their legislators and members, or are turning a blind eye to their deeds."

Another veteran leader Shivanand Tiwari, who has worked with both the RJD and JDU, said such incidents should not happen but do occur as aberrations.

"Remember that legislators physically assaulted each other in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly," he pointed out. "The Bihar Assembly has seen use of abusive language many times, even against the Speaker. The new legislators are untrained in legislative affairs and that could be a reason behind today's incident."

Senior BJP leader Chandra Mohan Rai said such threats by an MLA inside the House was unprecedented and the Opposition MLAs should have moved a priv-ilege motion.

RJD national spokesperson Manoj Jha said: "The BJP was passing disparaging comments on our legislator, who in turn just asked them to behave like legislators. The BJP is not being able to reconcile to its defeat in the Assembly polls and is targeting our legislators from the seats on which their candidates had won earlier in the 2010 polls."

He added: "The RJD will take stern action if its legislators made unparliamentary remarks."