President's Rule imposed in Puducherry, Assembly suspended till end of term

3 months ago 9

Days after the V Narayanasamy-led Congress government lost its majority, President's Rule was imposed in Puducherry on Thursday.

The notification, signed by President Ram Nath Kovind, said the decision was taken after the president received a report from the administrator of the Union Territory of Puducherry on February 22.

It said after considering the report and other information received by him, the president was satisfied that a situation had arisen in which the administration of the Union Territory of Puducherry could not carry on in accordance with the provisions of the Government of Union Territories Act, 1963 (20 of 1963).

"Now, therefore, in the exercise of the powers conferred by section 51 of the Act and of all other powers enabling me in that behalf, I (a) suspend, until the constitution of the 15th Legislative Assembly of Puducherry, in relation to the said Union Territory of Puducherry...," the notification said.

The president also suspended the operation of various provisions of the Government of Union Territories Act, 1963 (20 of 1963), thus imposing central rule in Puducherry.

As per the Ministry of Home Affairs notification, the Puducherry Assembly will be kept in suspended animation till its current term gets over later this year.

The MHA notification.

President Ram Nath Kovind gave his assent for the move a day after it was approved by the Union Cabinet.

The Congress government in Puducherry fell on Monday after Chief Minister V Narayanasamy resigned ahead of the confidence vote in the Assembly with the coalition government in the UT reduced to a minority due to a spate of resignations of party MLAs and a DMK legislator recently.

With the resignations, the ruling Congress-DMK alliance's strength fell to 11 as against the opposition's 14 in the 33-member assembly.

Narayanasamy met Lieutenant Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan and submitted the resignation of his four-member cabinet, ahead of the Assembly elections due in April-May.

According to Union Minister Prakash Javadekar, the decision to impose President's Rule in Puducherry was taken as no party came forward to stake claim to form the government in Puducherry following the resignation of the chief minister V Narayanasamy on Monday.

Subsequently, Puducherry LG Tamilisai Soundararajan recommended President's Rule there and the Union Cabinet has approved the same, he added.

With the President's assent, the assembly of the Union territory has now been suspended and the model code of conduct is expected to kick in soon as the Election Commission announces the date for elections in Puducherry.

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