Cong moves SC on Arunachal; Prez not in hurry

Cong moves SC on Arunachal; Prez not in hurry

A day after the Centre recommended imposition of President’s rule in Arunachal Pradesh, an agitated Congress filed a petition in the Supreme Court challenging the decision.

Also, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday explained the government’s position to President Pranab Mukherjee who sought clarification  on the need for Central rule in Arunachal Pradesh.

Mukherjee is believed to be not in a hurry to clear the Cabinet’s recommendation. Sources said the President has sought advice from constitutional and legal experts to arrive at a conclusion given the political turmoil in the Congress-ruled state.

Earlier in the day, a Congress delegation met and impressed on Mukherjee not to give nod for the Cabinet recommendation, with party vice-president Rahul Gandhi saying it was “a blatant bid to topple a duly elected government”.

Singh, however, met the President in the afternoon to explain what prompted the Cabinet to suggest Central rule in the state. Sources said the President was kept in the loop on the crisis in the state before the Cabinet’s proposal for keeping the Assembly in suspended animation.

Arunachal Pradesh Governor Jyoti Prakash Rajkhowa, in a report to the Ministry of Home Affairs, had mentioned about constitutional breakdown in the state on the grounds that Article 174(1) was violated as Assembly session was not held for six months till January 21.
The report is also believed to have narrated instances of the Raj Bhavan being gheraoed and the Speaker’s refusal to allow rebel Congress MLAs to even enter the Assembly complex, which the governor felt was a grave violation of democratic norms.

About 21 Congress MLAs have reportedly revolted against Chief Minister Nabam Tuki to form a government with support from 11 BJP MLAs and 2 independents in the 60-member Assembly.

The Congress questioned the Cabinet decision on the pretext that certain decisions taken by the governor and the deputy speaker were pending before the Gauhati High Court, which through an interim order had stayed those decisions till February 1.

“Politically, this is a subject of internal conflict of the Congress party,” said BJP spokesperson Sudhanshu Trivedi.

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