Bhubaneswar: State Assembly Monday witnessed several adjournments as opposition BJP and Congress members created a ruckus demanding resignation of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik over rising cases of missing children and rape incidents in the state.
The issue was raised by Leader of Opposition Pradipta Kumar Naik of the BJP, who alleged that the BJD government has failed in checking the increasing trend of rapes of minor girls as well as disappearance of children. Naik said more than 6,000 girls and boys have gone missing from the state within a span of four years and 40 per cent of them remained untraced.
He suspected that these missing children were being used in flesh trade or organ trade. While 100 boys and 502 girls were reported missing by March 2019, the police have traced only 31 boys and 79 girls, Naik said adding that out of 459 boys and 1875 girls who have gone missing in 2018, only 285 boys and 854 girls were found.
The BJP MLA also raised the issue of the alleged sexual assault on a HIV infected girl at a shelter home in Bhawanipatna, the headquarters of Kalahandi district, and the gangrape of an eight-year-old girl in Angul.
The issue was also taken up by Congress Legislature Party leader Narasingha Mishra, who held the state government responsible for disappearance of a large number of children. He said the party had earlier raised the issue but the Chief Minister claimed that the state was peaceful and the rape accused people were arrested.
“If the law and order situation is all right in the state as claimed by the Chief Minister, how could the number of rape cases increased to 2,500 in 2018 from 2,200 cases in 2017?” Mishra asked.
The BJP and the Congress members shouted slogans in the well of the house and demanded resignation of Patnaik who is also in charge of the home department. When the Congress members were in the well, the BJP MLAs including party’s lone woman law maker Kusum Tete attempted to climb the Speaker’s podium.
Speaker SN Patro said the government will make a statement on the missing children in the house, but opposition members were not satisfied and continued to demonstrate in the well of the house. Unable to run the House, Patro adjourned the proceeding thrice.