The cabinet today decided to postpone the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council election owing to Covid 19 pandemic. However, the administration of the GHADC will be taken over by the Governor.
Briefing the media after the cabinet meeting, the chief minister Conrad Sangma said, “The cabinet today decided to postpone the general election of the Garo Hills Autonomous District council to a date to be decided later depending upon the COVID 19 pandemic situation in the state.”
The Chief Minister further said, “The second decision taken by the cabinet was taking over the administration of the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council by the Governor under the Para 16 (2) of the 6th Schedule to the constitution of India.”
Stating that in the aspect of COVID it is not very easy for the Government to hold the election in this kind of circumstances, Sangma said, “We felt that after taking advice from the health department and other department concern we felt during this COVID times it may cause risk to the public in general, the Government, therefore keeping that factor in mind we have postponed election.”
Asserting that the election date will be decided later depending on COVID 19 pandemic situation, he mentioned that the Government will see how the situation unfolds in the future, and based on that the decision will be made. According to him, the pandemic is affecting everybody, and having elections will be very challenging.
He also refused to comment on the allegation that the elections to the GHADC was because of the corruption in the implementation of the central funds and said, “Critics can say what they want to say, I cannot stop them from saying anything.”
On the other hand, Sangma said the administration of the GHADC will be under the Governor. “So we will be proposing either the deputy commissioner or any other officer, who will then take over the administration and that decision we have left to the DCA to propose if it is the DC then of which districts of Garo Hills or any other officers from the government.”
The tenure of the present House will expire on October 18. It may be mentioned here that the elections to the GHADC were held on October 12, 2015, and counting on October 15, 2015.
The GHADC can be under Governor’s rule up to 6 months while the cabinet will soon make its decision depending on the COVID situation. The CM said the decision was taken because Covid 19 not easy to the held election.