Shillong: The first budget session of the 11th Meghalaya Assembly will begin on Monday with the address of Governor Phagu Chauhan to the House, following which election to the post of the Deputy Speaker of the House would be held.
Veteran leader of the ruling National People’s Party (NPP) Timothy Dalbot Shira is all set to be elected as the Deputy Speaker of the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly unopposed for the second consecutive term.
Assembly Secretariat Commissioner and Secretary, Andrew Simons said that none has filed the nomination, except for Shira.
Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, who also holds the finance portfolio, is expected to present the full budget estimates for the financial year 2023-2024 on March 23.
The Chief Minister is scheduled to reply to the debate on the governor’s address on March 21.
Meanwhile, the 11th Meghalaya Assembly might not have a Leader of the Opposition at all as the opposition party must have at least one-sixth of the total number of members of the House to claim the post of Leader of the Opposition.
The opposition Congress and Trinamool Congress have five members each, while the Voice of the People Party has four members in the 60-member Assembly with an effective strength of 59.
Assembly Speaker Thomas Ampang Sangma said the rules clearly say that an opposition party must have at least one-sixth of the total number of members of the House to claim the post of Leader of the Opposition.
Thomas, however, said that the Assembly Secretariat has sought legal advice on the matter.
The newly formed Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA)-2.0 government led by the National People’s Party has a strength of 45 with the support of BJP, regional parties and two Independent legislators.