PUDUCHERRY: After three long months, the Puducherry Assembly will finally have an opposition leader, with the biggest opposition party deciding to end its boycott of Assembly sessions and selecting its founder-leader, former chief minister N Rangasamy, as the leader of its legislature party.
The party had ruled the Union Territory for five years after winning its first ever election, but after losing power in the recently concluded polls, it had boycotted the first Assembly session when the newly-elected members took oath of office.
By formally electing Rangasamy as their leader, the speculations on whether the principal opposition party would participate in the budget session scheduled to begin on August 24 has effectively ended.
However, it remains to be seen whether Rangasamy would take on the ruling Congress government, led by his arch-rival, Chief Minister V Narayanasamy. As the Chief Minister, the soft-spoken Rangasamy used to maintain a stoic silence even in the face of the harshest attacks on his government or himself.
“NR Congress will function as a constructive opposition party and will raise voice for the development of the union territory and for the issues of the people. In the last two months, the Congress regime has been implementing the schemes mooted by the our government,” said Rangasamy. PNR Thirumurugan, of Karaikal to the territorial Assembly, would be the deputy legislature party leader, while NS Jayabal has been chosen as the whip.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister V Narayansamy welcomed Rangasamy becoming the Leader of Opposition, saying his government was prepared to debate any matter that the opposition would bring up in the House. “The presence of opposition in the House would lead to a healthy democracy,” he said.