The Supreme Court on Monday set aside a high court order for a Central Bureau of Investigation inquiry into corruption allegations against former Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Nabam Tuki. The apex court said the accused was not given an adequate hearing in the Gauhati High Court and ordered a fresh hearing into the PIL, reported PTI.
However, Chief Justice JS Khehar and Justice NV Ramana said that the FIRs filed by the investigative agency will remain as they are. Tuki is accused of misusing his position as a Public Works Department minister in 2006 and influencing the Arunachal Pradesh government to award contractual work to his family members. The Gauhati High Court had asked the CBI to register a case in the matter. Tuki, however, challenged the order in the Supreme Court.
The state has been battling severe political instability for more than a year now. In December 2015, a number of Congress legislators had revolted against then chief minister Nabam Tuki. One of the dissidents, Kalikho Pul, took over the post in February with the help of 11 Bharatiya Janata Party lawmakers. In July, the Supreme Court reversed this development, reinstating Tuki. However, Tuki did not have the support of a majority of the Congress legislators, after which Congress member Prema Khandu took over.
Pul committed suicide in August. In October, Khandu and 43 other MLAs defected from the Congress and joined the PPA, a regional party. The PPA, BJP and other regional parties are part of the North East Democratic Alliance.
On December 29, Khandu and six other party MLAs were suspended for “anti-party” activities. These include deputy chief minister Chowna Mein, Jambey Tashi, Passang Dorjee Sona, Zingnu Namchom and Kamlung Mossang, and Chow Tewa Mein. Next day, the People’s Party of Arunachal chose its MLA Takam Pario as the next chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh.