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Gujarat Assembly Budget Session To Commence Today

Gujarat Assembly Budget Session To Commence Today
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Highlights

The Budget session of the Gujarat Assembly will commence today with Governor O P Kohli\'s inaugural address. The state Budget would be presented on February 21 by Finance Minister Nitin Patel. While Congress has announced to disrupt the House proceedings in a bid to corner the government on the issue of Naliya gangrape.

The Budget session of the Gujarat Assembly will commence today with Governor O P Kohli's inaugural address. The state Budget would be presented on February 21 by Finance Minister Nitin Patel. While Congress has announced to disrupt the House proceedings in a bid to corner the government on the issue of Naliya gangrape, ruling BJP has urged the opposition to co-operate and maintain decorum during the session. The House will meet for 26 days for the Budget session, which will end on March 31. Discussions and voting will be held for 9 government Bills and 12 private member Bills during the session, Assembly Speaker Ramanlal Vora said in a statement.

Some of the key Bills to be tabled in the House include two Bills replacing Ordinances seeking to make necessary amendments in the current Gujarat Prohibition Act and Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) of 2003.

Both the Ordinances were issued during December last year by the government with an aim to introduce harsher punishment for those involved in liquor trade and consumption and to ban all kinds of hookah bars in the state respectively.

This will be the first Budget of Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, who took over the reins from his predecessor Anandiben Patel in August last year.

Gujarat BJP legislators on Sunday held a meeting at Gandhinagar to chalk out their strategy for the session.
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After the meeting, Minister of State for Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs Pradeepsinh Jadeja urged Congress to co-operate during the session.

"We appeal Congress legislators to remain present during the session and make proper representation. We also appeal them not to disrespect the Governor by creating chaos during his speech," said Mr Jadeja.

However, Leader of Opposition Shankersinh Vaghela reiterated that Congress legislators will not allow the Governor to deliver his address if he or the BJP government do not give any definitive assurance to conduct a free and fair probe in the Naliya case.

"If the Governor gives us assurance that government will do the needful in the Naliya gangrape case, we will allow the House to function. If no such assurance comes, we will disrupt the proceedings," said Mr Vaghela.

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