Cong MLA's plaint against House marshals: Speaker refers matter to ethics committee

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Speaker AN Shamseer | Screengrab: YouTube/Niyamasabha TV

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Assembly Speaker A N Shamseer has directed the Ethics and Privileges Committee to conduct an inquiry into senior Congress MLA Ramesh Chennithala's complaint that a few House marshals and a police officer made false allegations against Opposition MLAs who participated in a protest in front of the Speaker's office in March.

In his breach of privilege notice, Chennithala had alleged that police registered a case against seven MLAs from the Congress-led UDF under non-bailable sections of the IPC on the basis of a false statement given by a female watch and ward officer that she suffered a fracture in her hand due to the violent attack of the opposition legislators.

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The watch-and-ward staff, also known as house marshals, oversee the security of the State Assembly and work under the control of the Speaker and the Secretary to the Legislature.

Chennithala claimed that there were reports that the medical examination had proved the officer's allegation wrong.

The senior Congress legislator alleged that such a complaint was filed against the members as a result of a conspiracy between an Additional Chief Marshal and the female watch and ward employee.

He also alleged that the action of the Sub-Inspector of Museum Police Station, who registered a case against the UDF MLAs under non-bailable sections without the permission of the Speaker, is a contempt of the House and a violation of the special rights of the members.

It is clear that the complaint was filed with the intention of harming the reputation of the MLAs and tarnishing their image among the people, Chennithala alleged.

The Speaker referred the complaint to the Ethics and Privileges Committee on May 6 to examine it and conduct an inquiry.

Chennithala's office released to the media a copy of the bulletin issued by the Speaker's office in this regard.

The Kerala Assembly complex witnessed unprecedented scenes on March 15 when a section of opposition UDF legislators who marched to the office of Speaker Shamseer, accusing him of being biased in the House, got into a scuffle with house marshals.

The incident had occurred after the Opposition staged a walkout and marched to Shamseer's office, raising slogans and holding a banner in their hands saying, 'Speaker should show justice'. It was triggered by the Speaker's denial of the opposition's notice for an adjournment motion in the House on women's security.


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