Hours after dissident Congress leader Kalikho Pul, sworn in as Arunachal Pradesh chief minister on February 19, passed a crucial floor test in the state assembly on Thursday, state governor JP Rajkhowa not only congratulated him, but also described him as “the undisputed and most popular democratically elected leader” of the state.
Pul, sworn in as CM immediately after President’s Rule was revoked, had earlier in the day easily won a confidence motion with 40 legislators voting in his favour against none to oppose. While 17 Congress legislators who were still with deposed chief minister Nabam Tuki did not turn up in the assembly session, 11 BJP and two Independent legislators also voted in favour of Pul.
Pul had established himself as “the undisputed and most popular democratically elected leader of the state” by clearing the floor test with 100 per cent voting in his favour, governor Rajkhowa was quoted in a Raj Bhavan press release on Thursday evening. It also said that Pul had cleared the floor test “which he (governor Rajkhowa) had advised” adding that the governor expressed confidence that Pul would rise to the high expectations of the people, particularly the common man and do everything possible to make all sections of the people contented.
Governor Rajkhowa, who had landed in a major controversy as also a legal tangle after he summoned a special session of the state assembly in December 2015 without allegedly consulting the then chief minister and Speaker – with the developments leading to dismissal of the Nabam Tuki government and imposition of President’s Rule – also expressed hope that Kalikho Pul’s “astute leadership”, long experience and political acumen would take the state forward.
Pic: Arunachal Pradesh chief minister JP Rajkhowa and his wife flanked by chief minister Kalikho Pul (on their right), newly-elected Speaker Wangki Lowang and deputy speaker TN Thongdok (on their left) when they called on the governor in Itanagar on Thurday.