DIMAPUR, July 17 - The Kohima bench of Gauhati High Court will deliver its verdict on Tuesday on the petition filed by Nagaland Chief Minister Dr Shürhozelie Liezietsu challenging the directive of Governor PB Acharya asking him prove majority on the floor of the House on or before July 15, sources said.
The High Court bench on July 14 issued an order staying the directive of the Governor till July 17, the day of the Presidential election.
The Governor on July 10 directed the Chief Minister to obtain vote of confidence on the floor of the State Assembly on or before July 15 following the claim submitted by dissident MLAs led by former chief minister TR Zeliang to form the new government. Zeliang claimed that he commands support of 44 MLAs out of 59 in the State Assembly.
Citing the instance of Nabam Rebia and Bamang Felxi versus Deputy Speaker of Arunachal Pradesh Assembly, Shürhozelie argued that the Supreme Court had clearly laid down that the Governor has no authority on his own to summon, prorogue or dissolve the Legislative Assembly. The Governor can only do so on the aid and advice of the council of ministers headed by the Chief Minister, he said.
“This being the inescapable position of law, since the council of ministers has not advised the Governor to summon the State Assembly, the question of summoning the Assembly on or before July 15, 2017, does not arise,” the Chief Minister stated.
The Governor, in a letter to Liezietsu on July 15, said that the Chief Minister’s refusal to summon an emergent session of the 12th Nagaland Assembly did not seem justified. He pointed out that the Chief Minister in his reply did not refute the claim of TR Zeliang of enjoying support of 44 MLAs in the House of 59. He contended that it is not whether ‘this issue’ is an internal party matter of NPF but whether the CM enjoyed the support of the majority of the members of the House.
Acharya also informed Liezietsü that from the material available with him it prima facie appeared that the CM had lost the support of the majority of the members of the House.” The Governor, therefore, requested the Chief Minister to call for an emergent session of the 12th Nagaland Assembly to prove his majority on the floor of the House as early as possible.
Meanwhile, DAN chairman Kuzholuzo Nienu appealed to the NPF members comprising central office-bearers and members of all frontal units of the party to study the best case scenario and worst case scenario at this time of situation. He appealed to the members to be diplomatic in their approach and not provoke the situation at any cost.
According to a party release, he made the appeal during an emergency meeting of the Central party leaders of NPF held in the central office in Kohima under the chairmanship of Apong Pongener, working president and advisor (political) to the Chief Minister today evening.
Opining that courage and honesty are the pre-requisite to become a great leader, Nienu said that one should have such quality to lead the people.