Nagaland Governor P.B. Acharya on Tuesday asked Chief Minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu to prove his majority by July 15 in wake of the turbulence within the ruling Naga People’s Front (NPF) and demands for him to step down. “This directive comes following the claim submitted by former Chief Minister, T.R Zeliang to form the new government stating that he commands support of 34 legislators and seven Independent legislators of the assembly,” said an official communique.
Political instability has come up when Liezietsu is gearing up for the July 29 by-election from the Northern Angami-I assembly constituency. Liezietsu was sworn in on February 22 after Zeliang resigned following violent protest by tribal groups who were opposed to his move to hold civic polls with 33 per cent women’s reservation. Zeliang wrote to Acharya on Sunday staking claim to form the new government. The next day, Liezietsu sacked four of his top ministers and 10 Parliamentary Secretaries following a demand for his removal.
The rebellion within the legislature party erupted as some members accused Liezietsu of indulging in “nepotism” by appointing his son Khriehu Liezietsu as his advisor with cabinet status and pay. Khriehu, who had resigned from the Northern Angami-I assembly seat last month to enable his father to enter the assembly in order to continue as Chief Minister, had on Monday declined the appointment. In the 60 member assembly which has one seat vacant, the ruling Democratic Alliance of Nagaland coalition comprises 47 NPF legislators, four Bharatiya Janata Party members and eight Independents.