Sunday, February 25, 2018
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January 8 is a Red Letter day in the history of Allahabad. For it was on this day in 1887 that the first sitting of the Vidhan Parishad- after it was constituted-- was held in this very city in the Allahabad Public Library (Thornhill Memorial Hall).

In other words the foundations of modern democracy in Uttar Pradesh were laid in Allahabad and that too in Alfred Park.  It goes to the credit of our leading lawyer  Pandit Keshari Nath Tripathi who as Speaker of the Vidhan Sabha thought of reminding the nation about this historic event by organizing a special session of the Vidhan  Sabha in the Public Library. If you remember, it was Mr Keshari Nath Tripathi who presided over the House as the Speaker in this special meeting. This special session, held in January 2003, was inaugurated by the then Governor Vishnu Kant Shastri.
 It was indeed a grand gesture on the part of Mr Keshari Nath Tripathi to have organized this session and reminded the people of the city about their rich heritage and also told the rest of the people of the state that this city had several, achievements to its credit and,  starting the modern democratic tradition of  holding assembly sessions, began in this city- the cradle of democracy in the State..
Recalling that grand occasion, Mr Keshari Nath Tripathi says that those were the days when the political importance of Allahabad was being ignored. The citizens of Allahabad too were unaware of the political contributions of Allahabad in fostering democracy. By organizing this special session, Pandit Keshari Nath had indeed  aroused the people’s political consciousness.
To those of you who may not be knowing it,  the first sitting of the UP assembly was held 127 years ago in the Public Library. There were nine members of the Council including four Indians—Pandit Ayodhya Nath Pathak,  Maulvi Sayed Ahmad Khan,  Raja Pratap Narayan Singh and Rai Bahadur Durga Prasad. Altogether six sittings of the House were held in Allahabad after which it was shifted to Lucknow,
The first Bill tabled related to  ‘Shortening the Language used in the Acts of the Council’. It was laid on the portals of the House by Pandit Ayodhya Nath who initiated a discussion on it. After some amendments it was passed and became an Act on  April 16, 1887. In the sixth sitting a non-Government Bill was tabled by Pandit Ayodhya Nath . It was titled, ‘ Bill on Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ but it could not be passed.

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