‘Re­veal­ing ac­tion on so­lar re­port is breach of As­sem­bly priv­i­lege’

The New Indian Express - - TAMIL NADU/SOUTH - EX­PRESS NEWS SER­VICE @ T’Pu­ram

Through this act, the Chief Min­is­ter’s at­tempt was to keep the House in the dark and reap po­lit­i­cal gains. Ac­tion should be ini­ti­ated against Chief Min­is­ter Pi­narayi Vi­jayan in the grave mat­ter K C Joseph, Con­gress MLA

HEC­TIC ac­tiv­ity pre­vailed in the Con­gress camp on Thurs­day to take upon the govern­ment and the Chief Min­is­ter by rais­ing a priv­i­lege is­sue over the dis­clo­sures from the So­lar Com­mis­sion re­port and re­sort­ing to ac­tions like a vig­i­lance probe and slap­ping of cor­rup­tion and rape cases, even be­fore pub­lish­ing the re­port. KC Joseph M LA, Con­gress leg­is­la­ture party deputy leader and for­mer min­is­ter, filed a com­plaint with As­sem­bly Speaker P Sreera­makr­ish­nan, point­ing out a breach of priv­i­lege of House mem­bers, on this score.

The state Con­gress lead­er­ship is in no mood to wait till the manda­tory pre­sen­ta­tion of the re­port in the As­sem­bly, on ac­count of the po­lit­i­cal sig­nif­i­cance at­tached to it and the govern­ment mak­ing its in­ten­tion am­ply clear and as a po­lit­i­cal vendetta is out in the open. Build­ing up a de­fence po­lit­i­cally and legally has be­come cru­cial for the Con­gress and the UDF, it is sur­mised.

For­mer CM Oom­men Chandy has filed an ap­pli­ca­tion un­der the RTI, to the Chief Sec­re­tary seek­ing a copy of the So­lar Com­mis­sion re­port. He told Ex­press that in the event of deny­ing the de­tails of the re­port, he would pro­ceed legally to avail of the copy.

Find­ing grave fault with the govern­ment and the Chief Min­is­ter for dis­clos­ing the con­tents with­out tabling the re­port in an ap­pro­pri­ate man­ner and an­nounc­ing a probe, the Con­gress lead­er­ship be­lieves that what was pre­sented as con­clu­sions and find­ings of the Com­mis­sion were only po­lit­i­cal ver­sions of it and set goals of the rul­ing CPM.

How­ever, tag­ging charges of sex­ual ha­rass­ment and rape on Con­gress per­son­al­i­ties has jolted the lead­er­ship to se­ri­ously ad­dress the point as reg­is­ter­ing FIRs on this score would put many in a pi­quant sit­u­a­tion in­clud­ing ar­rests, though it is sure to raise a hor­net’s nest po­lit­i­cally, the net re­sult of which would be un­pre­dictable. The up­com­ing re­vamp in the state unit will also make the go­ing tough for the Con­gress in such a sce­nario.

K C Joseph, in his com­plaint to the As­sem­bly Speaker, along with an at­tach­ment of the press note cir­cu­lated at the Chief Min­is­ter’s press con­fer­ence the other day, pointed out that it is for the first time in the his­tory of the state that a Chief Min­is­ter had ex­plained the con­tents of a Com­mis­sion re­port be­fore pub­lish­ing or tabling it in the As­sem­bly.

There is no le­gal hur­dle in pub­lish­ing the re­port be­fore pre­sent­ing it in the As­sem­bly. But an­nounc­ing the ac­tion taken or to be taken on the re­port in a press con­fer­ence in­stead of do­ing it in the As­sem­bly is a breach of priv­i­lege of the House. “The prece­dent fol­lowed was to present a Com­mis­sion re­port with a state­ment of the ac­tion taken re­port in the House,’’ Joseph said.

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