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Updated January 25th, 2024 at 13:30 IST

Surprise Move in Kerala Assembly: Governor Arif Mohammed Khan Shortens Speech, Skips Policy Address

The tenth session of the 15th Kerala Assembly commence on Thursday.

Moumita Mukherjee
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Kerala: The tenth session of the 15th Kerala Assembly commenced on Thursday and was scheduled to feature the traditional policy address by Governor Arif Mohammed Khan. However, in an unexpected move which also indicated his displeasure with the ruling Left front in the state, Governor Khan opted to shorten his speech in the assembly. He quickly concluded the government's customary policy address in the Assembly by only reading out its last paragraph. The state government led by CM Pinarayi Vijayan is yet to issue an official statement on this regard.

Governor Khan arrived at the Assembly around 9 AM, completing the policy address before 9.02 AM and departing the House by 9.04 AM. Greeted with bouquets by Speaker A N Shamseer, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, and Parliamentary Affairs Minister K Radhakrishnan upon his arrival, Khan's actions spoke volumes about his dissatisfaction.

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Khan began the customary policy address by greeting everyone in the House and then said, "I will now read the last para." Reading out the last of the 136 paragraphs of the 62-page policy address, the Governor said, "Let us remember that our greatest legacy lies not in buildings or monuments, but in the respect and regard we show to the priceless legacy of the Constitution of India and the timeless values of democracy, secularism, federalism and social justice." He further said that the essence of cooperative federalism is what has kept India united and strong all these years and it was everyone's bounden duty to ensure that this essence is not diluted.

“The essence of cooperative federalism is what has kept our country united and strong all these years. It is our bounden duty to ensure that this essence is not diluted,” he said.

"Together as part of this varied and beautiful nation we will weave the tapestry of inclusive growth and responsible resilience, overcoming all the challenges that are thrown our way," he said, concluding his address, and sat down in the seat marked for him on the dais.

In a brief yet impactful address, Khan expressed his commitment to inclusive growth and responsible resilience, urging unity to overcome challenges. Following his conclusion, the national anthem played, and Khan promptly exited the Assembly, completing the entire exercise in under 5 minutes.

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The Governor's discord with the Left government centres around various issues, including disagreements on university functioning and his reluctance to sign certain bills passed by the Assembly. This discord has fuelled widespread protests across the state from the CPI(M), its youth wing Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), and its student outfit Students Federation of India (SFI).

(With agency inputs)

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Published January 25th, 2024 at 09:47 IST

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