Meghalaya Gets New Governor After Shanmuganathan’s Resignation
Shanmuganathan resigned following allegations of sexual charges that “compromised the dignity of the Raj Bhavan”.
President Pranab Mukherjee appointed Banwarilal Purohit, Governor of Assam, to discharge duties as Governor of Meghalaya, on Friday. The President also accepted the resignation of V Shanmuganathan as outgoing governor.
Facing charges of sexual harassment, Meghalaya Governor V Shanmuganathan resigned late on Thursday evening after a section of Raj Bhavan employees demanded his removal for "seriously compromising" the dignity of the gubernatorial office.
Official sources said 67-year-old Shanmuganathan tendered his resignation from the post. Chief Minister Mukul Sangma had said earlier in the day that he was waiting for Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Home Ministry to take a call.
Nearly 100 Raj Bhavan staff in Shillong petitioned President Pranab Mukherjee, the Prime Minister and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, seeking their intervention to remove the Governor and restore the dignity of Raj Bhavan.
The employees had alleged that Shanmuganathan had "seriously compromised the dignity of the Raj Bhavan and made it a 'young ladies club”. On Wednesday, employees of the Raj Bhavan in Shillong sent a five-page letter signed by nearly 100 staffers to the Prime Minister's Office and the Rashtrapati Bhavan. The letter noted:
It has become a place where young ladies come and go at will on direct orders of the Governor... Many of them have direct access to his bedroom... From the time he has taken over, the employees are going through severe humiliation, mental stress and torture.
Shanmuganathan, who took over as the Governor of Meghalaya in May 2015, attended a Republic Day celebration in Arunachal Pradesh, whose additional charge he holds since November last year following the removal of Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa.
Women activists had begun a signature campaign here seeking his removal. The campaign, spearheaded by women-led Civil Society Women Organisation and Thma u Rangli, was launched following reports of inappropriate behaviour by the Governor.
A woman job aspirant had also accused the Governor of making advances when she appeared for an interview at the Raj Bhavan.
(With inputs from PTI and The News Minute)
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