Image: Northeast Now

Sikkim subject committee vice-convener, Nawin Kiran Pradhan has filed a petition for disqualification of 12 former legislators of Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) party on the ground of defection for joining other political parties.

He expressed his hope that the Speaker would take up the matter and give his decision in the earliest to stop this political trend in the interest of the people.

An eleven-page petition addressed to the Speaker of Sikkim Legislative Assembly was submitted on Friday. The petition was also accompanied by an advocate, S Chatterjee from Kolkata.

The petition has been filed against former SDF MLAs, Narendra Kumar Subba, Karma Sonam Lepcha, Tashi Thendup Bhutia, Farwanti Tamang, Raj Kumari Thapa, Ugen T Gyatso Bhutia, Krishna Bahadur Rai, Dorjee Tshering Lepcha, Dilli Ram Thapa and Pintso Namgyal Lepcha, who have now joined Bharatiya Janata Party on 13 August at Delhi, and also against former SDF MLAs, Em Prasad Sharma and Gay Tshering Dhungel, who joined Sikkim Krantikari Morcha on August 14 last.

The petition has stated that these MLAs who have defected the party on August 13 and 14 were liable to be disqualified to be a member of the Sikkim Legislative Assembly under Article 191 (2) read with Paragraph 2 (1)(a) of the Constitution of India.

The petitioner has prayed to the Speaker to initiate appropriate proceedings under the paragraph 6 of the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution of India against these defected legislators and to disqualify them from being the member of the Sikkim Legislative Assembly.

Speaking to media persons after filing the petition, the petition, Pradhan mentioned that the petition has been filed to the Speaker for the disqualification of defected MLAs on the ground of the defection.

He expressed his hope that the Speaker would take the up the matter immediately to give his decision in the earliest.

He stated that that the petition has been filed in the interest of the people of Sikkim to end the culture of the political defection as this culture was betraying the people and their mandate.

“So we want the people to be more conscious and aware to stop this political culture. We cannot sit silent but we would continuously raise voice and work against this culture until we will get the justice,” he said.

Pradhan mentioned that the matter of the defection of seven former MLAs of SKM was still pending in the Assembly.

He requested the Speaker to resolve the matter in the earliest.

“We do not have any personal issue with the present 12 defected MLAs and earlier seven defected MLAs but we are just trying to say that defection is totally unconstitutional and defected legislators should be disqualified immediately,” he said.

He expressed that the ruling government has always been trying to taking take benefit of the defection due to the silence of the people.

He expressed his hope that the Speaker would take the action on the petition in the earliest.

Likewise, advocate Chatterjee mentioned that this was totally a new feature of defection where a totally non-existed party in the State has suddenly now 10 MLAs.

He added that the party which has got less than two per cent of votes in the last election has now 10 MLAs.

He expressed that this clearly shows that a national party who also in the power in the Centre was trying to interfere into the political edifice of the small state like Sikkim.

“This is also an attempt to break down and change the political demography of the State because this is the State which has from beginning of seen that local regional party in the power and opposition in the State,” Chatterjee said. He added that the people have repeatedly put their faith on the regional parties and now BJP by using its power was trying to change the demography of the State.

He also said that it was also an attack on the multiparty system of the country which is the element of the basic structure of the constitution.

He expressed that this matter going to be a unique case where the petition has invited the decision of the Speaker.

He expressed that to bring the transparency in politics and to establish the rule of law the people need to raise their voice against the defection.

Sagar Chhetri

Sagar Chhetri is Northeast Now Correspondent in Gangtok. He can be reached at: sagchhetri@gmail.com

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