Winter session of Assembly kicks off amid Opposition boycott
Speaker TN Haokip has defiled the sanctity of the House, says O Joy

Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, February 06: The Opposition bloc boycotted the Assembly session today to air their staunch stand against the presiding of the House by a Speaker whose name has been linked to the killing of a school girl.

The Governor's address too was boycotted as the address was prepared by the SPF Government whose two Ministers have also been named in the same case.

Talking to media persons during a crowded press conference at the Opposition Room of the Assembly building soon after the end of the first day's session, MPP president O Joy said Governor Arvind Dave delivering the inaugural address prepared by the tainted SPF Government is akin to siding with the Government whose two MLAs and the Speaker are alleged to be connected to the murder of Lungnila Elizabeth.

Stating that the boycott decision is logical, Joy elaborated that a person holding public office and involved in corruption cases may be pardoned but the Speaker's involvement in a criminal case is condemnable.

As such the Opposition members taking part in the House discussion will tantamount to accepting a tainted person to occupy the highly sacred post of Speaker, he contended.

In a democratic system of governance, the Parliament or State Assembly is regarded as the highest place for decision making where representatives of the people cutting across religion and community congregate to chart out the policies of the country or State, Joy said.

Saying that charges against the Speaker is not levelled by the opposition but is the declaration of an organization based on its finding through interrogation of the main accused who had also assured to present concrete evidence on the murder case, Joy said continuation of TN Haokip as the Speaker defeats the noble principles of democracy.

Training his gun on the Governor, Joy said as the text for Arvind Dave has been prepared by the SPF Government with subsequent approval of the Cabinet, where the two tainted MLAs are also members, the guilt of the Governor is no less than those accused in the murder case.

The Governor accepting and delivering the address approved by the cabinet can best be described as endorsing the credibility of the SPF Government whose three members have been named by the NSCN (IM) as connected to the murder case, he added.

As the Governor was previously approached by the DPA and like minded Opposition parties to refrain from personally addressing the session he could have taken alternative measures by applying the 1968 conference of Presiding Officers at Darjeeling.

Recalling the Darjeeling resolution, Joy said on health ground a Governor may not address the Assembly session in person but the address could be read out by a substitute.

Joy further observed that the Speaker alleged to be involved in the murder of the innocent school girl and still reluctant to resign from the office can be assumed as inviting public wrath as witnessed during the agitation where the Assembly building was razed.

To preserve the sanctity of the House and prevent desecration of Speaker's chair DPA would send a detailed report on the prevailing Assembly situation not only to the Lok Sabha Speaker and Speakers of all the State assemblies but to presiding officers of all the democratic countries, he said.

Asserting that remaining session of the House would be boycotted in case the Speaker presides it, Joy said even if the no confidence motion against TN Haokip could not be placed in the Assembly during the current session no force in the world can prevent the Opposition alliance from bringing up the matter at an appropriate time.