Need to change Constitution to end Assembly’s dependence on Governor for assent to Bills: Tamil Nadu CM Stalin

Chief Minister accuses Governor R.N. Ravi of speaking against secularism and belittling the aspirations of the people of Tamil Nadu

Updated - April 11, 2023 05:36 pm IST

Published - April 10, 2023 08:35 pm IST - CHENNAI

Chief Minister M.K. Stalin. File

Chief Minister M.K. Stalin. File | Photo Credit: SIVA SARAVANAN S

Chief Minister M.K. Stalin on Monday, April 10, 2023 alleged that Governor R.N. Ravi had the habit of saying something against the Tamil Nadu government whenever Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the State or he (Stalin) went to New Delhi to meet the Prime Minister. 

He also made a strong pitch for amending the Constitution to change the requirement for the laws passed by an elected Assembly to get assent from a “nominated” Governor. “It goes against the spirit of the Constitution. Let us take the initiative to amend the Constitution,” he said. 

Mr. Stalin, who moved a resolution urging the Union government and the President to issue instructions to the Governor to give assent to the Bills passed by the Assembly within a specific time frame, accused Mr. Ravi of speaking against secularism and belittling the aspirations of the people of Tamil Nadu. 

“The Governor has become a mouthpiece of communal forces,” the Chief Minister said.

“He functions against the interest of the people of the State. He denigrates the decorum of the Assembly that has completed its centenary. He has converted the Raj Bhavan into a Political Bhavan by participating in meetings and expressing harsh views on a daily basis,” Mr. Stalin said.

The Chief Minister said that though many judgments of the Supreme Court had stated that a Governor should act as a friend and a guide to the government elected by the people, Mr. Ravi’s actions, right from the start, had proved that he was not ready to be a friend of the people of Tamil Nadu. 

The Chief Minister also made it clear that “we hold nothing personally against the Governor”, and “we criticise only his activities”.  

“I do not want to convert the Assembly into a political platform by joining issue with the Governor. At the same time, if he tries to create trouble for the proceedings of the House with political motives, we will not remain mute spectators,” he said. 

Mr. Stalin also made a reference to the consultation paper circulated in 2000 to consider the possibility of impeaching a Governor on the lines of the power conferred on Parliament to impeach the President. 

Recalling the observations of the Sarkaria Commission that “it is an appropriate time to dispense with the post of Governor” and “the Governor should be a detached figure”, the Chief Minister said the Governor should always have an open-minded discussion with the State government. 

“It is not fair to discuss administrative issues on public platforms. He is belittling the decorum of the House, the aspirations of the people and the Bills adopted in the interest of the people,” he said. 

Mr. Stalin said he would not say that the Governor was ignorant of the Constitution. “I would like to place on record that his political loyalty has swallowed his loyalty to the Constitution,” he added. 

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