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Have taken charge as Arunachal Pradesh CM, claims Nabam Tuki

Embattled Congress leader Nabam Tuki claimed to have taken charge as the chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh at the Arunachal Bhawan in New Delhi on Wednesday.

india Updated: Jul 13, 2016 22:42 IST
HT Correspondent
Nabam Tuki
File photo of Nabam Tuki, who was reinstated as chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh on July 13, 2016, following the SC quashing all decisions of the governor which had precipitated his fall in December, 2015. (PTI)

Embattled Congress leader Nabam Tuki claimed to have taken charge as the chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh at the Arunachal Bhawan in New Delhi on Wednesday.

Tuki communicated his position to Tathagata Roy, officiating as the frontier state’s governor in absence of JP Rajkhowa.

The spokesperson of the governor’s house confirmed receiving the letter and said no action by the governor has been taken yet.

Tuki told HT, “I have also spoken to the chief secretary and DGP regarding the future course of action after reaching Itanagar tomorrow ”.

In the landmark judgement given by Supreme Court earlier on Wednesday, the Congress government was restored in Arunachal Pradesh, scrapping all decisions by the governor JP Rajkhowa that precipitated the fall of the previous administration.

Congress government led by Tuki was dismissed in December, when 21 of the 47 MLAs rebelled against the chief minister, accusing him of running the government in an autocratic manner.

Read: President’s rule in Arunachal: A recap of what led to this situation

A visibly pleased Tuki described the Supreme Court judgment as a “historic verdict” and said the ruling would help protect “healthy democracy” in the country. “This is a historic and remarkable judgment.”

“According to the judgment, our government has been restored,” Tuki said. “I’ll go to the state and talk to all the 47 Congress MLAs. We will call a meeting.”

In Guwahati, chief minister Kalikho Pul maintained that there was “no threat” to his government and he will file a review petition in the Supreme Court.

Pul said a floor test would prove the numbers backing his government. “The government runs only with numbers. There is no threat to our government. That will be decided on the floor of the Assembly.”

With the Supreme Court restoring the previous Congress government in Arunachal Pradesh, the verdict is likely to set in motion the following chain of events:

  • Tripura Governor Tathagata Roy, sworn in as acting Governor of AP during the leave of absence of incumbent Governor Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa, will be tasked with implementing SC’s verdict.
  • SC verdict reinstates CM Nabam Tuki and old Speaker Nabam Rebia.
  • Present CM Kalikho Pul and Assembly Speaker Wangki Lowang will have to step down immediately.
  • If there is demand, Speaker Rebia can summon special assembly session for floor test.
  • CM Kalikho Pul can file review petition at SC, but chances of success in review petition are very rare as the case goes before the same Bench which decided the case previously.
  • In the floor test, Congress, with only 15 MLAs, is likely to lose and Pul may stake claim for the CM’s post again.
  • If political crisis continues, President’s Rule can be imposed after keeping the assembly in suspended animation for up to a year.

On December 16, the Nabam Tuki government was dismissed in an Assembly session called by the Governor. The bench called the actions of Governor Rajkhowa as “illegal” and violative of the Constitutional provisions.

Read: Arunachal crisis timeline: Kalikho Pul’s expulsion to restoration of Cong govt

Commenting on the Supreme Court’s verdict, union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the government will study Supreme Court judgment in detail before making any reaction.

He said the court had ordered status quo ante from December 15 and a lot of developments have taken place after that, including withdrawal of President’s Rule and swearing-in of a new government under Kalikho Pul.

“What requires to be done requires detailed consideration,” Prasad said.

Prasad dismissed that “there was any law mismanagement” by the Centre in the case.

It is the second such ruling by the Supreme Court since May when it similarly restored the ousted government of Chief Minister and Congress leader Harish Rawat in Uttarakhand.

Read: Arunachal verdict: Cong says democracy won, BJP reminds it of Emergency