Other States

Manipur Speaker accepts 5 Congress MLAs’ resignation

With the resignation of 6 Congress MLAs,Chief Minister Biren Singh appeared to have consolidated his grip on the ruling BJP-led coalition govt in Manipur. File photo

With the resignation of 6 Congress MLAs,Chief Minister Biren Singh appeared to have consolidated his grip on the ruling BJP-led coalition govt in Manipur. File photo  

Six Congress MLAs submitted their resignation hours after the BJP-led coalition government headed by Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren won a trust vote on Monday evening.

Assembly Speaker Yumnam Khemchand accepted their resignation on Tuesday. A bulletin issued by Assembly Secretary M. Ramani Devi said their constituencies have become vacant “from the forenoon of Tuesday”.

There was no clarity on the status of MLA Paonam Brojen, who was among the six who put in their papers.

The resignations of Okram Henry, Oinam Lukhoi, Muhammad Abul Nasir, Ngamthang Haokip and Ginsuanhau has reduced the strength of the 60-Member House to 48. Seven other lawmakers, including three of the BJP, had either been disqualified or resigned earlier.

Also read: Manipur crisis is a family matter, says Biren Singh

Mr. Henry is the nephew of former Chief Minister Okram Ibobi, who in June staked claim to form a government after nine MLAs had withdrawn support to Mr. Biren. Five of them returned to the BJP-fold later.

Officials said the Election Commission of India was making preparations for bypolls to the 12 vacant seats. Assembly polls in the State are slated for early 2022.

“We tendered our resignation to protest the State party leadership. Instead of facing the COVID-19 threat boldly, they were attempting to wrest political power from the coalition Ministry,” one of the former Congress MLAs said.

The five Congress MLAs were among the eight who had defied a three-line party whip and skipped the trust vote for Mr. Biren on Monday.

The Congress threatened action against those who defied its whip and criticised the Speaker.

“At what time did the six Congress MLAs submit their resignation letters to the Speaker? Can the Speaker accept their resignations during the session when the whip was issued to all the Congress MLAs much earlier” asked Congress spokesperson Ningombam Bupenda Meitei.

‘Murder of democracy’

Mr. Ibobi, also the Congress Legislature Party chief, said the Speaker resorted to “murder of democracy” by going for voice vote despite the Opposition’s demand for a division of votes during the confidence motion.

After Tuesday’s resignations, the Congress now has 19 MLAs, followed by the BJP with 18. The BJP’s coalition partners, the National People’s Party and the Naga People’s Front have four each, while the All India Trinamool Congress and the Lok Jan Shakti Party have one each. The remaining one is an independent.

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Sep 23, 2020 8:11:47 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/six-congress-mlas-in-manipur-resign/article32323281.ece

Next Story