Sunday, February 25, 2024

Meghalaya lawmakers in assault row

Meghalaya Higher and Technical Education Minister Manas Chaudhuri has filed an FIR against Deputy Speaker Sanbor Shullai alleging that the latter had assaulted and threatened to kill him.
The Deputy Speaker, however, denied the charges made by Chaudhuri and termed the accusation against him as politically motivated.
Chaudhuri filed an FIR at the Sadar Police Station and demanded Shullai’s arrest.
This is the third assault case registered by the state police involving MPA legislators. Earlier, similar charges were filed against Minister in-charge Mining and Geology Donkupar Massar and government’s chief whip Adolf Lu Hitler Marak.
On Tuesday night, both the Minister and the Deputy Speaker descended at a marriage reception here where the alleged assault took place.
“He (Shullai) came darting at me unprovoked and said ‘I will kill you’ and later punched me on my chest after abusing me, I don’t know why. A constitutional figure cannot behave in such an unruly manner…this is constitutional terrorism and he must be removed from his post,” Chaudhuri said during a press meet today at his residence
Chaudhuri, a journalist-turned politician was elected as an Independent legislator from Mawprem constituency, while Shullai was elected as a Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) legislator from Laban constituency.
The Independent legislator is supporting the NCP-backed Meghalaya Progressive Alliance (MPA) government.
Brushing aside Chaudhuri’s allegation, an infuriated Deputy Speaker said “This is baseless and cheating the people of Meghalaya. I am going to file a counter FIR against him.”
“In fact, I shook hands with him, but he kept insulting me by calling me Keyo Re Khasi Hero Idhar Bhi Agya. I didn’t react and went home with my wife and daughter feeling insulted,” Shullai claimed. “If I had beaten him up he would have been in hospital,” the Deputy Speaker defended.
Chaudhuri, however, said he would do whatever to maintain his “self dignity” hinting at possible withdrawal of support from the government if action wasn’t taken against Shullai.
The MPA has support of 32 legislators in the 60 member Assembly.
Terming the alleged incidents a “serious one” Assembly Speaker Bindo M Lanong, who is camping at Delhi, said he would take up the matter once he arrived in Shillong.
“ Officially, I am yet to be informed of what happened between the two, but I can comment further only after reaching Shillong,” the Speaker said.
Meanwhile, East Khasi Hills Superintendent of Police AR Mawthoh said police have registered a case against the Deputy Speaker and the Higher and Technical Education Minister based on the FIR lodged against each other.
“Investigations are on and we will interrogate them,” Mawthoh said.

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