Hyderabad: The Telangana BJP staged a notable boycott during the oath ceremony for newly elected MLAs today, expressing strong objections to the appointment of Akbaruddin Owaisi from AIMIM as the Protem Speaker of the state assembly. The Protem Speaker holds the responsibility of administering the oath to the recently elected legislators.
T Raja Singh, BJP MLA and victor in the recent assembly elections from Goshamahal declared in a video message that he would refrain from taking the oath “as long as he is alive” in the presence of AIMIM. Singh asserted that he would only take the oath once a full-term speaker is appointed, citing concerns over Owaisi’s past anti-Hindu comments.
Having secured eight seats in the latest elections, the BJP’s state unit chief G Kishan Reddy voiced opposition to Owaisi’s appointment, stating that it contradicts the tradition of appointing senior MLAs as Protem Speaker. Reddy announced the BJP MLAs’ decision to boycott the oath-taking before Owaisi and pledged that they would take the oath once a Speaker is duly appointed. He further indicated that the BJP would address the matter with the Governor.
This is not the first instance of Raja Singh refusing to take the oath, as he similarly abstained in 2018 when the Protem Speaker belonged to AIMIM.
Scheduled to assume the role of Protem Speaker on Saturday, Owaisi was expected to administer the oath to the elected MLAs today. Singh accused the new Chief Minister, Congress’s Revanth Reddy, of succumbing to fear and allowing Owaisi to hold the Protem Speaker position, paralleling the actions of his predecessor K Chandrashekar Rao. The customary protocol designates the most senior MLA in the assembly as the Protem Speaker, a position for which Owaisi, elected six times from Chandrayangutta constituency, qualifies.
However, Singh contended that several senior MLAs could have been chosen as the Protem Speaker, insinuating that the new Chief Minister prioritized appeasing minorities and AIMIM leaders over adhering to established protocols.
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