Amaravati: Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly on Friday witnessed uproarious scenes with opposition TDP MLA and Tollywood actor N. Balakrishna blowing a whistle during a protest over party supremo and former Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s arrest.
Balakrishna, who had created a row by twirling his moustaches and slapping his thighs in the house on Thursday, blew a whistle as a mark of protest. Another MLA G. Rammohan was also seen blowing a whistle.
Speaker Thammineni Sitaram took serious note of the MLAs’ action and directed marshals to snatch whistles. However, the MLAs resisted their attempts.
As soon as the House met for the day, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) members were on their feet demanding a debate on Naidu’s arrest. When the Speaker disallowed their adjournment motion, they trooped into the well of the House and started raising slogans.
Carrying placards, the opposition MLAs demanded that Chandrababu Naidu be released and the ‘false’ case booked against him in alleged skill development scam be withdrawn. They raised slogans calling for an end to ‘psycho rule’.
Minister B. Rajendranath Reddy and Ambati Rambabu took exception to the protest by the TDP members. Rambabu, who was sporting a sticker of Chief Minister Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy on his shirt, said they would not tolerate any bad words about the chief ministers and his rule. He advised the TDP members to participate in the debate on skill development.
As the ruckus continued, the Speaker suspended two TDP MLAs K. Atchannaidu and B. Ashok for the rest of the session. Atchannaidu is also Andhra Pradesh unit president of TDP.
Balakrishna, who had brought a whistle with him, started blowing it. Amid the din, the Speaker adjourned the House.
The Speaker had suspended three MLAs for the rest of the session during a similar protest on Thursday. Other TDP MLAs were suspended for the day.
The Speaker had also warned Balakrishna on Thursday. He said he was not taking action on Balakrishna, treating this as his first mistake.
Balakrishna’s actions had evoked a strong protest from the ruling YSRCP. Minister Ambati Rambabu had told him that he is in the legislature and not shooting for a film.
The actor, who is brother-in-law of Naidu, had stated that the YSRCP MLAs provoked him by making insulting remarks about his profession.
Earlier, the MLAs reached the Assembly in a padyatra. They were carrying placards. “Save democracy in Andhra Pradesh” and “It’s a black day in democracy’ were written on the placards.