Complete breakdown in Arunachal, Guv in danger: Centre to SC

Complete breakdown in Arunachal, Guv in danger: Centre to SC

The Centre today justified in Supreme Court the imposition of President's rule in Arunachal Pradesh, saying there was "complete breakdown" of governance and law and order in the state where the Governor and his family apprehended "grave danger to their lives" daily.

The affidavit, filed by Ministry of Home Affairs, alleged that Chief Minister Nabam Tuki and Speaker Nabam Rebia have been playing "communal politics" against Governor Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa, who in his reports had recommended imposition of President's Rule in the state by elaborating the sequence of events leading the Congress government becoming a minority.

"Chief Minister Nabam Tuki and Speaker Nabam Rebia, both belonging to same community, are playing communal politics by inciting, provoking and funding students of a particular community and other communal organisations against other tribes and the Governor by referring to his Assamese roots," it said.

"Even the Raj Bhawan premises were under siege by the supporters of Nabam Tuki and Nabam Rebia for several hours as the district administration and the police did not enforce the prohibitory orders and not even a single arrest was made," the Centre's affidavit said.

Elaborating indicators of constitutional breakdown, it said the governor's letters/references to the Chief Minister on matters of public importance concerning state administration are mostly not responded to in violation of Article 167(b) of the Constitution.

The affidavit settled by Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, who was asked by a five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Justice J S Khehar to respond to the petition challenging the imposition of central rule, said, "there is no effective administration in the state and the government is not functioning as per the Constitution in the state."

"The Governor, who is the nominee of the President of India, is being publically insulted, humiliated and even gheraoed by the supporters of the present government and the state administration is a silent spectator.

"Gherao, at the instance of the political executive, of the Governor, who is the nominee of the President, amounts to constitutional breakdown in the state," the affidavit added.

The affidavit said, "the assembly session which took place on December 16 last year has been disputed by Nabam Tuki and his supporters.
"Whether this Assembly sessions is valid or not is under litigation in this court. In this eventuality, this court rules in favour of interpretation that this assembly session was not valid then in any case there will be constitutional breakdown because the requirement of Article 174(1) would have been breached.

"On the other hand, if this court holds that the December 16 (session) was valid then it is clear that the current government is in a minority and is not allowing the testing of the majority. Therefore, in either case, the state is heading for a constitutional crisis....," the Centre claimed.

It alleged that the Chief Minister has been encouraging indiscipline, lawlessness, politicking by government officials by inciting, provoking and funding an apex communal organisation of one community, mainly comprising government officials, to publicly organise demonstrations/rallies for recall/removal/resignation of the incumbent Governor.

Further, the affidavit said the Chief Minister has not kept the Governor informed on state's development agenda, programmes, projects, schemes etc.

The Centre also questioned the conduct of the Chief Minister by referring to December 8, 2015 letter released by him to the press from New Delhi, using "highly defamatory, unparliamentary, insulting and threatening language against the Governor."

"Governor and his family are daily apprehending grave danger to their live. The Governor has highlighted that if he could not feel safe, how could a common man be safe with the present law and order situation prevailing in the state," the affidavit said.

Giving reference of materials and documents annexed with the response, running into 316-page, the Centre said from the material available before the President, it is evident that the Speaker together with the political executive prevented the meeting of the Legislative Assembly from taking place in the Assembly premises which was locked.

"As a result, the Assembly session had to be held in a different premises. It is worth mentioning that locking of Assembly premises amounts to locking of the Constitution," the affidavit said.

"The fact that the Speaker could lock down by an order the very premises of the assembly and not allow the legislators to even visit the assembly is a grave act and subversive in the democratic set up of the Constitution.

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