Members of the ruling Mahagathbandhan in Bihar, barring Chief Minister Nitish Kumar's JD(U), on Friday staged a march inside the Vidhan Sabha premises in protest against the conviction of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, by a Gujarat court, in a defamation case.
RJD, Congress, CPI (ML) Liberation, CPI, CPI(M) and former Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi's Hindustani Awam Morcha (HAM) took part in the march.
The MLAs alighted from their vehicles at the main gate and marched towards the assembly hall, a few hundred metres away, raising slogans like 'Modi hatao, desh bachao' (dethrone Modi, save the country) and holding banners and placards.
"The court should rethink its judgement. Rahul Gandhi has not defamed anybody in particular by his caustic utterances about a surname that were made in far-off Karnataka. I do not wish to cast any aspersions in the judiciary but it is also true that people get away by making horrific statements like calling for the rape of corpses by digging graveyards," said Mr Manjhi.
Inside the House, Mahagathbandhan members continued to raise slogans following which Speaker Awadh Bihari Chaudhary asked CPIML(L) legislator Mahboob Alam to make a statement on behalf of the alliance.
However, no sooner than Mr Alam repeated the slogan 'Modi hatao desh bachao', members of the opposition BJP were on their feet, furiously registering their protest.
The Speaker then decided that he has had enough and he asked marshals to snatch away banners, posters and placards from members who had brought these inside the House and proceeded with the Question Hour.
When asked about JD(U)'s stance, its chief spokesperson Neeraj Kumar said, "It is wrong to draw a conclusion that we have a divergent view and there is any problem, on this account, in the Mahagathbandhan."
"I am a member of the legislative council. The march was staged by members of the assembly and I am not sure how well was the coordination on this matter. But it will be preposterous to draw a conclusion that it has anything to do with the alleged prime ministerial ambitions of our leader Nitish Kumar," he said.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)