Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Kalikho Pul won the trial of strength in the state assembly via voice vote on Thursday. He won 40-nil with predecessor Nabam Tuki and 16 MLAs loyal to him failing to turn up.
The 60-member Arunachal Pradesh assembly has an effective strength of 58 after two legislators were allegedly tricked into quitting last year.
Wangki Lowang, who was elected speaker unopposed after governor JP Rajkhowa’s address, moved the motion of confidence for Pul to prove majority. All the Congress legislators present, including 11 of BJP and two independents, voted in Pul’s favour.
“Our government has been tasked with the responsibility of rebuilding Arunachal Pradesh and improving the lives of the people. Fiscal discipline, development, employment through creation of posts for teachers, doctors and police personnel for improving law and order, are our priority areas,” Pul said after the trust vote.
Earlier in his address, Rajkhowa laid out the government’s plans while admitting the “last few months were filled with action that brought us to this new juncture”.
Barely 24 hours before the floor test, nine Tuki loyalists switched over to Pul’s camp. This boosted the chances of Pul, who had only 19 Congress MLAs when he staked claim to form the government, of passing the floor test.
Pul insisted his was a Congress government, but the party was reluctant to accept the assembly proceedings, terming it a “mockery of democracy”. AICC’s northeast in-charge V Narayanasamy warned party MLAs of action if they attended the session.