Maharashtra House adjourned for the day amid din over refinery issue

Thursday, 12 July 2018

The continuous uproar over the issue led to repeated adjournments, and finally forced Speaker Haribhau Bagde to adjourned the House for the day

Nagpur: The Maharashtra Assembly witnessed din over the Nanar refinery issue for the second day today as members of the ruling ally Shiv Sena, and the opposition Congress and NCP demanded scrapping of the project. 

The continuous uproar over the issue led to repeated adjournments, and finally forced Speaker Haribhau Bagde to adjourned the House for the day. 

The House was adjourned yesterday also after the Shiv Sena and the Congress had tried to snatch the mace of the Speaker. 

The Nanar refinery project in Ratnagiri district is being opposed by local people as well as the Shiv Sena and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), as they claim that it would damage the ecology. 

As soon as the House assembled today,Leader of Opposition Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil demanded that the day's business be set aside and the Nanar refinery issue be taken up for debate. 

He also demanded that the government announce scrapping of the project, or else the opposition will not allow the House to function. 

"We want the government to announce scrapping of the project," the Congress leader said, adding that some people's concern over the issue was not real. 

He said during a protest over the issue in Nagpur yesterday, some leaders were turned away by agitators. 

Sunil Prabhu (Shiv Sena) objected to Vikhe Patil's comments and accused him of making a false statement and insulting the Sena. 

Prabhu claimed that protesters had yesterday praised the Sena leadership for its support to those opposing the Nanar refinery project. 

He demanded that the LoP apologise for defaming the Shiv Sena. 

Some Congress members then got up and said Vikhe Patil had not even named the Sena, but only stated that some people's opposition to the project was not real. 

Vikhe Patil said the gram panchayats of 17 villages, which are likely to be affected by the project, have staunchly opposed the proposed refinery. 

He alleged that land acquisition for the project was being done by misuse of the government machinery. 

"Fake documents are being prepared, like in the name of a person called Maruti Manjrekar, who is missing as per police records for the last 30 years. A complaint in this connection has been filed at the local police station," he said. 

Amid noisy scenes and arguments between members of the Sena and the Congress, the House was initially adjourned for 10 minutes. 

When the House reassembled, NCP'sBhaskar Jadhav said the issue was not just about 17 villages getting affected. 

"The nuclear power project in Jaitapur is (likely to come up) just 1,200 metres away from the Nanar refinery, and this is like inviting a disaster. There will be development and job creation only if we and our future generations will be alive," he said. 

The Shiv Sena members then trooped into the well of the House and started shouting slogans demanding scrapping of the refinery project. 

The Congress and the NCP members also joined in to support the Sena's demand. 

The Speaker rushed through two questions listed for the day and then adjourned the House till the end of the Question Hour. 

Later, the Chair took up laying of papers and introduction of bills but again adjourned the House for 15 minutes as the uproar continued. 

The House was adjourned once again as the noisy scenes continued unabated. 

Later, amid the din, Bills pertaining to an amendment to the Code of Civil Procedure, compensation for acquired land, and an amendment to the Cooperative Societies Act for holding of elections were passed by a voice vote. 

However, as members continued to stall proceedings, the Chair adjourned the House for the day. 

The Nanar project in Ratnagiri district envisages construction of an integrated refinery and petrochemicals complex. 

The project will be implemented by Ratnagiri Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd. 

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