Bhopal, January 8: Congress MLA N P Prajapati was Tuesday elected Speaker of the 15th Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly in the absence of BJP MLAs who walked out in protest of the protem speaker's refusal to let the opposition party propose the name of its nominee for the Constitutional post.
Former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has termed the development as a "black day for democracy". After proceedings for the day began, the BJP wanted to propose the name of its nominee Vijay Shah for the post of Speaker, which was not allowed by protem speaker Deepak Saxena. Madhya Pradesh Assembly Elections 2018: Congress Leader Premchand Guddu Quits Party, Joins BJP.
The refusal by Saxena sparked protests with BJP MLAs rushing to the Well of the House, forcing the protem speaker to adjourn the proceedings twice for a period of ten minutes each. After the House reassembled, BJP members announced boycott of proceedings and staged a walkout. In the absence of BJP MLAs, Congress members proposed the name of Prajapati, the MLA from Gotegaon, following which the protem speaker ordered a voice vote. Prajapti secured all 120 votes of MLAs of Congress and its allies.
In the 230-member House, the Congress has 114 MLAs and is supported by seven more MLAs - SP (1) and BSP (2) and four independents. BJP has 109 MLAs. After the walkout, Chouhan termed the protem speaker's decision to not let BJP propose the name of the party nominee as "anti-democratic".
"This is the black day for democracy in the history of the Madhya Pradesh legislative assembly," the former chief minister said. Later, BJP MLAs walked in a march to Raj Bhawan to submit a memorandum on the issue to Governor Anandiben Patel. The Kamal Nath-led Congress government came to power last month.