The Nagaland Assembly constituted a seven-member Select Committee headed by Deputy Chief Minister TR Zeliang to examine the Nagaland Municipal Bill, 2023.
The Assembly had earlier decided to refer the Bill to the Select Committee after the members deliberated on the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) election which has not been held in the northeastern state for almost two decades.
The announcement about the formation of the Select Committee was made by Speaker Sharingain Longkumer before declaring the session sine die.
The detailed order on the working of the Committee will be notified by the Assembly Secretariat, but normally any such panel set up to refer to a government bill needs to submit its report within three months, Longkumer told media.
The Bill was tabled in the House on September 12 by Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio following deliberation of the members on matters of urgent public interest on Urban Local Bodies Elections.
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During its March session, the Assembly repealed the Nagaland Municipal Act 2001 and decided to bring about a new law incorporating the views of the tribal bodies and civil societies on 33 per cent women reservation and also tax on land and properties.
The government had announced the conduct of the elections to ULBs several times but staunch objection from the tribal bodies and civil society organisations against the 33 per cent women reservation and tax on land & properties had held back the polls.
In 2017, when the state government led by T R Zeliang tried to hold the elections, there was violence. Two persons were killed and government properties and offices were damaged.
It also led to the fall of the Zeliang ministry. The Neiphiu Rio-led all-party government in March this year also announced the holding of an election with 33 per cent women reservation as directed by the Supreme Court.
However, following stiff resistance again, the government cancelled the elections and also repealed the Act of 2001.
The members of the House during their discussion on Tuesday were of the view that the Bill should be referred to the select committee for examination and also there should be a consensus among all stakeholders before it is passed as an Act.
Other members of the Committee include ministers K G Kenye, P Paiwang Konyak, N Jacob Zhimomi, Metsubo Jamir and Advisors Zhaleo Rio & Mhathung Yanthan. They would be assisted by the secretary-in-charge of NLA, Khruohituonuo Rio as member secretary.
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