Northeast’s newly elected assemblies witness a number of firsts
Khasi and Garo made debut in Meghalaya assembly, as did Hindi in Nagaland house, and the national anthem in Tripura.india Updated: Mar 25, 2018 12:58 IST
The three newly elected state assemblies in the north-east are making headlines with a slew of firsts.
On Saturday, Nagaland assembly witnessed a ‘historic’ scene when minister for higher and technical education Temjen Imna Along addressed members of the House in Hindi—a language never used earlier.
The BJP legislator from Alongtaki, while taking part in the motion of thanks to the governor’s address, took the speaker, Vikho Yhoshu’s permission and spoke a few lines in Hindi.
“Is terahwa sadan mein aa sakne ka parmeshwar ne jo mauka hum sabko ko diya hai, (uske liye) sab logo ko pranam (I thank the Lord and you all for giving us the chance to become a part of the 13th assembly of the state),” Along stated.
The minister soon switched to English. Opposition MLAs from Naga People’s Imkong, L Imchen and Chotisuh Sazo opposed Along’s speech, as it ‘violated’ the rules.
As per the rules for conducting the Nagaland assembly state, the languages prescribed “English or in Naga-Assamese”, but allows a member, unable to speak in these languages, to “address the assembly in his mother tongue”, provided he will hand over a written copy of the speech in English to the assembly secretary.
Hindi isn’t the most popular medium of communication in the northeast, especially in states like Nagaland, Meghalaya and Mizoram, which have dominant Christian populations.
The newly elected Meghalaya assembly also witnessed a few firsts.
Governor Ganga Prasad addressing the first session of the House in Hindi, triggering protests from MLAs as business of the assembly is usually transacted in English.
To register their protest, Congress MLA Ampareen Lyngdoh and Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM) legislator Adelbert Nongrum spoke in Khasi and Nationalist Congress Party’s Saleng Sangma addressed the house in Garo.
Khasi and Garo are the languages used by the state’s two prominent indigenous communities—the Khasis and Garos—but it was the first time both were used by MLAs inside the assembly.
The Tripura assembly, where the BJP sprang a major surprise by uprooting the 25-year-old CPM regime, also witnessed a first.
On Friday, the national anthem was played for the first time in the House when the first session of the newly elected assembly was convened.