TODAY -

Ibobi demands special House session
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, August 14 2020: Contending that the way the motion of confidence was decided by the Assembly Speaker on August 10 violated Rules 311 and 360 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business, and also orders ofthe Supreme Court, Ex-Chief Minister and Opposition leader Okram Ibobi has urged Governor Dr Najma Heptulla to convene a special session of the State Assembly under Article 174 of the Constitution to conduct a trust vote.

The CLP leader submitted a representation to the Governor to this effect today.

Even though three notices were submitted to the Speaker for a no confidence motion, the agenda of business of the one-day Assembly session held on August 10 did not include no confidence motion.

Thus the Speaker violated Rule 311 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business and Article 208 of the Constitution of India.

Such violation is unprecedented in the Parliamentary history of Manipur and it is against the rights conferred upon the Members of the House by Rule 311, said the CLP leader's representation.

However, a confidence of motion raised by the Chief Minister was listed in the agenda of business of the day.

When voting on the motion was to be taken up, the Speaker was requested to decide the motion of confidence by a division under Rule 360 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business, Ibobi said.

But the Speaker, disregarding the request, opted for voice vote to decide the motion.

Because of noise and opposition raised by the Opposition MLAs for division for voting, there was little scope for even asking the Members to say 'Ayes' or 'Noes'.

The Speaker on his own volition disregarding every rule and norm for conducting voice vote, proceeded ahead and announced that 'Ayes have it' and adjourned the House sine die.

Even if the Speaker thought that the division was unnecessary, he was required to follow the proviso to Rule 360 (3) which says, "Provided that if in the opinion of the Speaker, the division is unnecessarily claimed, he may ask the Members who are for 'Ayes' and those for 'Noes' respectively to rise in their places and on a count, being taken, he may declare the determination of the House.

In such a case, the names of the voters shall not be recorded".

Again the Supreme Court passed an order in 2016 which states, "On the confidence motion, having been put, a division of the House shall take place and the Members who are inclined to vote in favour of the motion shall sit on one side of wing and the others who are against the motion shall sit on the other side of the wing.

"The Members voting in favour of the motion shall singularly vote by raising their hands one by one and that will be counted by the Principal Secretary, Legislative Assembly.

Similar procedure shall be adopted while the Members vote against the motion," reads the Supreme Court's order, according to the representation submitted by Ibobi to the Governor.

It asserted that the ruling and decision of the Speaker of Manipur in the matter of voting on confidence motion held on August 10 is arbitrary, illegal, null and void as it was contrary to the procedure given in Rule 360 of Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business as well as the decisions rendered by the Supreme Court of India.

It then urged the Governor to summon a special session of the Assembly under Article 174 of the Constitution to consider, debate and vote on the motion of confidence moved by Chief Minister N Biren afresh as the voting done on August 10 was inconclusive.


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