Jamir on Law & Order role of Governor
DIMAPUR, NOVEMBER 18
GOVERNOR of Odisha SC Jamir has explained the role governors of state play must play when addressing political and administrative situations such as law and order within the context of State-Union relations.
The former Chief Minister of Nagaland issued a press release Monday expressing impatience for what he said was the “different vies and opinions” being bantered to and forth in Nagaland about the statutory imperatives stated in Article 371 (A) of the Constitution of India. “As a signatory to the 16 Point Agreement of 1960, I can not remain quiet when different views and opinions are expressed with regard to Art.371A,” the senior politician said in the press release. He made illusions to what is believed to be the administrative in the state and for which special powers have been set for the governor “so long as the situation continues to remain disturbed.”
“The motive behind this provision was to avoid open and direct confrontation with the underground who are also Nagas. Whatever be the reasons at that point of time, the constitutional position of the Governor remains,” Jamir, also former governor of several other states, stated.
He cited Art 371A (I) which reposes special responsibility on the governor of Nagaland regarding action to be taken in matters relating to law and order by exercise of individual judgment. The clause in the article states: “The conditions precedent for reposition and exercise of this power by the Governor of Nagaland are – (i) internal disturbances… (ii) the Governor is obliged to consult the Council of Ministers, but is entitled to exercise his individual judgment as to the action to be taken. Such an arrangement of exercise of powers by the Governor would continue to subsist till the President of India exercises powers as per the second proviso to Art. 371-A(1)(b).”
Also, Article 166 (3) of the Constitution of India has empowered the governor to make rules for the ‘more convenient transaction of business of the Government of the State.’ “The deployment of manpower and personnel for maintenance of law and order is an integral part of the expression ‘action to be taken in matters relating to law and order’,” he said. “Such personnel constitute the instrumentality of the state for maintenance of law and order. Any rule framed by the Governor for conduct of business under Art. 166 of the Constitution of India would have to yield to and subjugate itself to the overriding mandatory prescriptions of Art. 371A (1)(b).”
The Odisha governor also said that orders relating to appointment/deployment of higher posts involving discharge of duty relating to law and order in the State would require the approval of the Governor of Nagaland in his individual judgment after consulting the Council of Ministers.”
Odisha Governor Jamir’s statement comes in the backdrop of a crucial consultative meeting organised by the state government earlier this month in Kohima. It was attended by all political parties, tribal Hoho’s student bodies and civil societies. The meeting concluded with a resolution to uphold the rights of the Naga people while also asking the GOI to be sincere in implementing the Constitutionally guaranteed special privileges under Article 371(A). Here the Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio commenting on the Rules of Executive Business, especially with regard to transfer and posting of officers in the state communicated the state cabinet’s decision that, like other state’s of the country Nagaland too will not send the files of promotion, transfers and postings to the Governor for approval.
‘None of the state’s in the country seek the approval of the governor for promotions, transfers and postings of government officers below the Chief Secretary and Director General of Police’, Rio had said.