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regular-article-logo Friday, 19 April 2024

Nitish Kumar-led NDA government moves no-confidence motion against RJD Speaker

The MLAs did not repose faith in Awadh Bihari Chaudhary any more and asked him to step down: Notice

Dev Raj Patna Published 30.01.24, 05:17 AM
Awadh Bihari Chaudhary.

Awadh Bihari Chaudhary. File picture

The newly sworn-in National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government led by chief minister Nitish Kumar has moved a no-confidence motion against Bihar Assembly Speaker Awadh Bihari Chaudhary, in one of its first moves against the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) that is now in the Opposition.

Several MLAs of the ruling alliance, including senior BJP leaders Nand Kishore Yadav and Tarkishore Prasad, Hindustani Awam Morcha Secular (HAMS) founder and former chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, JDU MLAs Vinay Kumar Choudhary, Ratnesh Sada and others, gave a notice expressing "no confidence" in the Speaker, who is from the RJD.

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The notice was sent to the Assembly late on Sunday evening. It mentioned that the MLAs did not repose faith in Chaudhary any more and asked him to step down.

In view of the notice, the state cabinet met on Monday and deferred the budget session of the Assembly, which was to start from February 5. It also authorised Nitish to decide on the fresh dates for the session.

Though the Speaker could not be contacted on Monday as his mobile phone was switched off, an aide told this newspaper that he was travelling to Siwan, the Assembly constituency he represents.

However, sources said Chaudhary and the RJD had decided to put up a fight and could bring the matter to vote in the House.

According to the rules regarding the functioning of the Assembly, the Speaker gets 14 days' time after receiving a no-confidence notice. Once the period is over, the House convenes and 38 of its MLAs take up the matter before the Speaker, after which he is supposed to either resign from the post or list it for discussion on the same day, followed by voting. He does not preside over the discussion.

Sources in the government said a special daylong session of the Assembly would be convened on February 12. The no-confidence motion against the Speaker would be taken up on that day if Chaudhary does not step down before that. It would then be followed by the floor test of the new government.

The formation of the NDA government leaves the House delicately balanced. While the ruling alliance has 128 seats (BJP 78, JDU 45, HAMS 4 and one Independent MLA) in the 243-member Assembly, the Opposition Mahagathbandhan (Grand Alliance) has 114 MLAs (RJD 79, Congress 19, CPIML 12, and two each from CPI and CPM). Asaduddin Owaisi’s party AIMIM has one legislator.

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