PUDUCHERRY: With just over three-and-a-half months remaining for completion of its tenure, the Puducherry Congress-DMK government led by V Narayanasamy has fallen after Chief Minister V Narayanasamy tendered his resignation to the Lt Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan on Monday.
This came after he lost the confidence vote on the floor of the Legislative Assembly on Monday. It is the seventh government in the Union territory to have fallen after losing its majority.
Before the voting on the confidence motion moved him was taken, the Chief Minister sought clarification from Speaker V P Sivakozhunthu on whether the nominated MLAs could vote on the confidence motion since they cannot exercise their vote in the Presidential election. But without waiting for a reply, he walked out even as opposition members cited the Supreme Court order in this regard. Following the walkout, the Speaker declared that the confidence vote was defeated.
The government became a minority after having been reduced to 12 members (including the Speaker) following the resignation of five Congress MLAs and one DMK MLA and disqualification of one Congress MLA earlier. The opposition has 14 MLAs including three nominated members who are BJP functionaries.
Earlier, speaking on the confidence vote, the Chief Minister faulted the central BJP government for conspiring to topple his government and called it a 'murder of democracy'.
Citing the toppling of governments in Arunachal Pradesh, Goa and Madhya Pradesh by the BJP, he said members of the ruling party are being made to resign either by luring them or by threatening them with CBI, Income Tax or Enforcement Directorate violations cases and a similar method was adopted in Puducherry. Calling it an unethical political business, he criticized the opposition for supporting such moves of the central government and said people will call them opportunists.
The Chief Minister accused the central government of depriving the people of Puducherry by blocking all his initiatives for people’s welfare to render his government ineffective and tarnish its image. The government has done its best as could be done for the people despite the central government and the former Lt governor Kiran Bedi blocking all the good initiatives of the government, he said.
He cited the blocking of the free rice scheme, providing 10 percent reservation for government school students in medical education, 50 percent seats in private medical colleges under government quota, health insurance for all citizens, provision of tablets for students for online classes, recruitment of police constables, teachers, junior engineers in electricity department and lower division clerks among others. The Lt Governor without giving approval sends the files to Delhi, where it gathers dust or is sent back with repeated queries.
Further, the central government has failed to accord statehood to Puducherry despite the parliamentary standing committee headed by Sushma Swaraj having recommended statehood after making an assessment. Though the Centre is earning around Rs 3000 crores GST revenue from Puducherry, it gives just 20 percent to Puducherry as central finance, when it gives 41 percent to other states.
He reminded the opposition it is a vicious circle and said that he will face them in the elections when people will decide.
Meanwhile, the opposition led by leader of Opposition N Rangasamy said a decision on whether to stake claim to form a government will be taken after a discussion with the leaders of allies.