Gangtok, 10 Jun:
Sikkim Democratic Front party workers staged a dharna outside the District Administrative Centre here today pressing a three-point agenda – protesting the inaction on the heckling of their president Pawan Chamling in the Legislative Assembly, the cancellation of several appointment made under the One Family, One Job scheme, and the continuation of PS Tamang [Golay] as the Chief Minister even though he is disqualified from contesting elections.
The party also submitted a memorandum on their issues to the Chief Secretary, District Collector [East] and Superintendent of Police [East]. Senior leaders, party workers and youth of the party sat on daylong dharna here carrying placards and banners announcing their issues.
SDF spokesperson, MK Subba, stressed that the heckling of Mr Chamling by SKM supporters sitting in the Visitors’ Gallery of the Legislative Assembly on 03 June was “unfortunate, objectionable and condemnable.”
What has been even more unfortunate is that despite a week having passed since the incident, the Speaker has not taken any action against anyone thus far despite the clear disrespect shown not only the SDF president but also the Legislative Assembly itself.
Mr Subba demanded that all involved in this incident be arrested and action taken against them as per the law and rules and procedures and conduct of business in the Assembly.
“We have already submitted a memorandum to the Speaker on the same and we will take our next course of action if no action is taken by the concerned authority,” he said.
On the second issue, he said that among the numerous exemplary works of the SDF government led Pawan Chamling, OFOJ was a flagship programme which provided jobs to 20,000 youth of the State. He alleged that SKM had tried to mislead the people before the election about this scheme and also promised to regularise the job within 100 days of formation of the government.
“After forming the government with a thin majority, the SKM government attacked the OFOJ scheme by claiming it violated the model code of conduct and took out a circular on the same,” he said. He stated that SDF party immediately registered its strong protest against this decision of the government.
“It is not illegal and has not violated any MCC norms. The present government is using it as an excuse to cancel the appointments of several thousand youth,” he said.
“If the Department of Personnel does not withdraw its circular on OFOJ by 13 June, then SDF will take the matter to Court in the interest of the youth of Sikkim,” he said.
On the third issue, Mr Subba said that everyone is aware of the fact that Mr Tamang cannot contest elections and yet he was appointed the Chief Minister of Sikkim.
“We strongly condemn this appointment since it sets a dangerous precedent not only for Sikkim but also for the entire nation when a person convicted under prevention of corruption Act and thus barred from even contesting elections for six years is allowed to hold such high office,” he said.
“Our party has been consulting legal experts and will take legal action. This is not a fight between SKM and SDF but it is a fight for the Constitution and the country,” he said.