Prem Singh Tamang began his professional career as a school teacher in 1990. And today, he has taken over as the 6th Chief Minister of Sikkim.
Popularly known as PS Golay, Prem Singh was born on February 5, 1968 to Kalu Singh Tamang. He passed Bachelors of Arts from Darjeeling Government College in 1988. Between 1990 and 1993, he served as a graduate teacher.
In 1994, Golay was elected for the first time to the Sikkim Legislative Assembly as an SDF candidate from the Chukhung constituency in West Sikkim.
Though Golay was just 26 year old in 1994, he was inducted as a minister because of his active role as a political organizer.
From 1994 to 2004, Golay was as the Minister for Animal Husbandry and Industries for two consecutive terms. And between 2004 and 2009, he was the minister for Building and Housing Department.
But, 2009 was the turning point of his political career. Even after winning from Burtuk constituency, he was denied ministerial berth. He was nominated as the Chairperson of Industries Department.
Golay refused to accept the post of chairman, and soon emerged as a descendant MLA of the SDF. As a dissident leader, he stirred a hornets’ nest when he addressed the historic Rolu Picnic on December 21, 2009, an event organised by employees of Sikkim government.
It was at the Rolu playground on December 21, 2009 that Golay had announced his revolt against the SDF government, and especially against Chief Minister Pawan Chamling. He was still a SDF legislator then.
On February 4, 2013, Golay launched the Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM) at Soreng in West Sikkim district, with the primary aim to dethrone Chamling and his SDF.
Within a year of its establishment, the SKM in the assembly election in 2014, won 10 of the 32 seats in the Sikkim Legislative Assembly. He was also elected as an MLA from Burtuk Constituency.
On January 13, 2017, he was disqualified from the Sikkim Legislative Assembly after being convicted for misappropriating government funds. He landed in jail, and was behind the bars for a year, and was released from jail on August 10, 2018.
Despite registering a victory in the assembly elections, people of Sikkim who had voted for a political change, were not sure about Golay becoming the next Chief Minister of the state.
There were strong reasons to be confused with Golay becoming the CM of Sikkim because as per the law, he cannot contest elections till August 9, 2024.
According to Section 8 of the Representation of People’s Act, anyone convicted under the Prevention of Corruption Act cannot contest an election for a period of six years from the date of completing the prison term.
Despite the legal barriers, Golay is now the 6th CM of Sikkim.