While a large number of political parties in Punjab are vehemently against the recently passed Farm Acts, it appears difficult for them to reach a consensus. And on Monday, the Aam Aadmi Party MLAs spent the night inside the Punjab Assembly as they protest against the Captain Amarinder Singh led state government. The Opposition's ire stems from the fact that the Punjab government had not tabled a Bill to counter the Centre's new farm laws on the first day of a special assembly session.
The Aam Aadmi Party MLAs sat in the Well of the House till late evening after which they moved to the gallery outside the assembly, but confined themselves within the assembly complex building demanding copies of the Bill which the state's Congress government is now expected to introduce on Tuesday. As per reports, they had spent the night on the premises.
"Captain Amarinder Singh government calls special Session to pass laws to save Farmer-Labour-Ahrtias from Central Laws, but hasn't shown the resolution to be passed by Assembly. So AAP Punjab MLAs to stay in Assembly, may be throughout (the) night to get the Resolution Copy as we need to discuss it with all stakeholders," tweeted AAP MLA from Sunam, Aman Arora.
Ruby, the AAP MLA Bathinda Rural, also took to Twitter expressing a similar sentiment. "All @AAPPunjab MLAs sitting in vidhan sabha for obtaining the copies of agriculture Bills," she explained sharing a picture.
Leader of Opposition, Punjab Vidhan Sabha, Harpal Singh Cheema took to Twitter avowing that the party's representatives would not move until they were given a copy of the bills to be presented. "It is our right as party in opposition to take the bills for our perusal," he added.
Visuals shared from later in the night showed the AAP MLAs sleeping on sofas and mats inside the State Assembly.
Earlier on Monday, the AAP MLAs had also conducted a dharna in the House. Even after the adjournment of the session for the day on Monday afternoon, AAP legislators continued their dharna, demanding copies of the Bill to counter the legislation enacted by the Centre.
Notably, four years ago when Congress was in opposition in Punjab, their party MLAs had spent the night in the Punjab assembly seeking a debate on the no-confidence motion against the ruling SAD-BJP combine, which was defeated by voice vote, and had refused to vacate the House till the government gave an assurance that a discussion will be allowed on it.
(With inputs from agencies)