New Delhi, March 21
The Delhi Assembly was adjourned for two hours on Tuesday amid a ruckus between the ruling AAP and the opposition BJP over a breach of privilege notice in connection with alleged leaking of budget details.
The House proceedings were adjourned once in the morning as well after AAP MLAs trooped into the Well following the conclusion of Delhi Finance Minister Kailash Gahlot's address over the stalling of the budget.
As the House reassembled, BJP MLA Vijender Gupta gave a notice for breach of privileges over the alleged leaking of budget details.
To this, Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel said, "As per rules, such a notice needs to be given three hours before. You are also saying that it should be taken up for discussion. It seems the aim is to create a ruckus and waste the time of the House." The Speaker also issued a strict warning to Gupta. The notice given by him mentioned the leaking of details of the 'Outcome Budget', which was tabled in the Assembly on Monday.
Dilip Pandey, AAP chief whip in the Delhi Assembly, said there was a mismatch in the content of Gupta's notice and what he said in the House, and suggested referring the matter to ethics committee.
Later, an uproar erupted over the issue with AAP and BJP MLAs indulging in a war of words, prompting the Speaker to adjourn the House till 2 pm.
In a tweet, Gupta said, "I filed a notice against Breach of Privilege by FM Kailash Gahlot & Minister Gopal Rai, who leaked details of the Delhi budget. Instead of taking action, I was marshaled out. The Delhi govt is being ruled by anarchists who disregard the Indian Constitution & democracy." Later, addressing a press conference, Leader of Opposition in the Delhi assembly, Ramvir Singh Bidhuri said they are demanding the resignation of the finance minister.
"When the Sheila Dikshit government was in power, then Finance minister Mahinder Singh Saathi was questioned by Speaker over announcing date of budget without approval of the Centre, and he had to tender an apology. Gahlot shared information with media regarding the budget and breached his oath of secrecy as a minister," Bidhuri said.
In a statement issued on Monday amid a row over the stopping of the budget presentation, Gahlot had said that the total budget size was Rs 78,800 crore, out of which Rs 22,000 crore was earmarked for expenditure on infrastructure and just Rs 550 crore on advertisements, he said.
The allocation for advertisements was the same as in last year's budget, he added.
His response came after sources in the MHA said the ministry has sought clarification from the AAP government as its budget proposal had high allocation for advertisement and relatively low funding for infrastructure and other development initiatives.
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