AAP MLAs stage walkout in Punjab Assembly

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Chandigarh, November 7: Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Thursday passed a resolution to request SGPC and Akal Takht jathedars to allow women to perform kirtan at the Golden Temple in Amritsar. The resolution was moved by Rural Development Minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa on the second day of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha’s special session to mark the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak.  

Members of the House said that this would be in line with the principles laid by Guru Nanak, “who preached equality for all, irrespective of sex, class and caste.”

Punjab government also passed the Punjab State Commission Scheduled Castes (Amendment) Bill, 2019, despite opposition from AAP and Akali Dal MLAs.

The amendment, which will increase the retirement age of the chairman of the Punjab State Commission for Schedule Castes from 70 to 72 years, is being made to facilitate retired IAS officer Tejinder Kaur so that she continues serving as chairman of the commission.Sadhu Singh Dharamsot, Minister for Social Justice, said that the Bill “is a well thought out decision to avail her services, which are much needed.” 

Aam Aadmi Party opposed the Punjab State Legislature (Prevention of Disqualification) Amendment Bill.

The amendment enables exclusion of recently-appointed Advisers to the Chief Minister from the office of profit category. Recently, the government had appointed six Advisers, four political and two for planning. This Bill would amend the law to add these posts to the list of posts that are not considered office of profit for disqualification of MLAs. 

AAP MLAs staged a walkout to protest against the Bill. Raising slogans, they said that a state government “which claims to have no money, cannot burden the state by appointing these advisors”.

Akali Dal leader of legislative party, Parminder Singh Dhindsa, too, opposed this bill and said it was not “legally tenable.”