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Newly elected Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh has won the trust vote set in motion in the Manipur assembly today. The BJP has won the vote in a floor test 32-27, defeating its rivals and the single largest party to have emerged in the recently concluded assembly elections in the state, the Congress. BJP’s Yumnam Khemchand Singh, from Singjamei constituency, was elected the new speaker of the assembly, defeating Congress candidate Govindas Konthoujam. The new speaker conducted the trust vote through a voice call despite a congress demand that the vote be held through secret ballot.
Defecting Congress MLA from Andro constituency Th Shyamkumar, who was sworn in along with Chief Minister N Biren and deputy chief minister Y Joykumar Singh, and will be getting a cabinet berth in the Biren cabinet, voted in favour of the BJP. Ten Congress MLAs moved a motion to disqualify Shyamkumar from the assembly inciting the anti-defection law and saying that he had crossed the floor of the house. They also demanded that the assembly proceedings be adjourned due to the defection. But both motions were struck down by the Speaker who said that no protocol had been breached. Shyamkumar can remain a cabinet member for a period of six months before facing a bypoll in his assembly constituency.
Meanwhile addressing the assembly, Chief Minister N Biren Singh appealed to the opposition to work in cooperation with the ruling party for the benefit of the people. Singh said thatg the government had already resolved the issue of the economic blockade and that it had been lifted last night, and now the next issueto be resolved by the government would be that of the eight unburied bodies still lying in a morgue in Churachandpur town, Churachandpur district.