Congress in Manipur on Friday moved Governor Najma Heptulla and sought another special session of the Assembly soon for voting to decide the Motion of Confidence moved by Chief Minister N. Biren Singh.
The party dubbed the motion of confidence won by BJP-led government in the state on August 10 through voice vote as “inconclusive and procedurally illegal.”
A memorandum submitted by former chief minister and leader of opposition Okram Ibobi Singh said the Speaker Y Khemchand Singh had violated the Rule 311 and 360 of Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Manipur Legislative Assembly and Supreme Court judgments in Harish Rawat (Uttarakhand) petition in 2016 and Shivraj Singh Chouhan case in April 2020 by rejecting the Congress MLAs’ demand for division of vote on August 10.
“By disallowing division of the House by the Speaker, the purpose of ascertaining if any member of Congress MLA voted against the whip or the direction issued by the party whip was defeated. It was nothing but the malafide exercise and misuse of the office of Speaker in order to derail the due process of deciding on the Confidence Motion,” said the memorandum.
The Congress also cited judgments by the Supreme Court in Harish Rawat and Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s case in 2016 and April 2020 in which the apex court directed for the division of vote and even videography of the proceeding while deciding a motion of confidence.
The party further alleged that the Speaker also violated Rule 311 of the Business of the House by not including Congress’ demand for no-confidence motion–first by Ibobi Singh on July 27 and later by two other MLAs, Kh. Joykishan Singh Meghachandra Singh separately on July 30 in the meeting of the Business Advisory Committee on July 31.
Chief minister N Biren Singh moved the motion of confidence after Congress’ demand for no-confidence alleging the government’s failure to act against drug trafficking including in a case involving a local BJP leader.