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First session of Sikkim assembly commences, Gyaltsen elected speaker

National,Politics, Fri, 22 May 2009 IANS

Gangtok, May 22 (IANS) The first session of the newly elected 32-member Sikkim assembly commenced Friday with former tourism minister K.T. Gyaltsen being elected as the new speaker of the house.


Protem Speaker Menlom Lepcha swore in all the members of the new Sikkim Legislative Assembly Friday morning. M.B. Dahal was elected as the deputy speaker.



'I shall carry out my duties in the true spirit of parliamentary practices and traditions of democracy. I welcome all the new members to this first sitting of the eighth assembly,' Gyaltsen said.



The proceedings of the house started Friday with the introduction of the 11-member council of ministers by Chief Minister Pawan Chamling, who is also the leader of the house.



Chamling said that the way in which the elections in Sikkim had turned out was a big indicator of a 'changing trend' in the state.



'I congratulate the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on their achievement,'



Referring to the fact that the elections went off peacefully with no report of post- poll violence, Chamling said: 'The maintenance of peace and sanctity here in Sikkim despite it being a border state is a big achievement for the entire country.'



'Elections in Sikkim have been the most peaceful. This is due to the exemplary work of the administration and also the people of the state who have been able to exercise their democratic rights in a free and fair manner. The opposition has accepted the mandate of the people which is a very good sign for the state,' he added.



With Chamling's Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) sweeping the elections, wresting all 32 assembly constituencies and the only Lok Sabha seat, the ruling party faces no opposition in the house.


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