Bhubaneswar: Odisha assembly Speaker SN Patro said on Sunday that BJP MLA Subhas Panigrahi should apologise for violating rules by attempting to die by suicide in the House over paddy procurement.

Patro’s comment came amid a political stalemate over the incident that happened on Friday with the ruling BJD announcing that it will not allow the House to function unless the Deogarh MLA apologises.

The speaker said that since Panigrahi has made a mistake, he should not hesitate to apologise in the House.

Panigrahi’s apology will bring back normalcy in the House which is the need of the hour, he said.

“It depends on the BJP to decide the further course of action,” he added.

Maintaining that there is a specific set of rules based on which the House runs, Patro asserted that one who deviates from the rules will be deemed as violating it.

Panigrahi said that he will tender an apology only if Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik does so for putting farmers in trouble due to “mismanagement” of paddy procurement.

Earlier, BJP whip Mohan Majhi said there is no question of an apology and the speaker has the power to suspend an MLA and he can do so.

Panigrahi on Friday had attempted to die by suicide by consuming sanitiser in protest against the government’s alleged apathy towards farmers who face difficulties in disposing of their produces in mandis.

Senior Congress MLA Suresh Routray said that attempting suicide inside the House is irresponsible.

Senior BJD leader Snahangini Churia said the incident has brought a bad name for the state and Panigrahi should apologise for his action.

The proceedings of the House on Saturday were completely washed away due to the pandemonium as the BJD members demanded an apology from Panigrahi while the BJP and Congress MLAs sought immediate action to lift all the paddy from farmers waiting to sell their produces across the state.

Unable to run the House, Speaker Patro had adjourned the proceedings till 10.30 am on Monday.

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