Constituent Assembly Debates

G.M. Sadiq’s speech on his election as President of the Constituent Assembly, November 1, 1951

Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir. Read proclamation and full list of members
A group photograph of the Members of the Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir
G.M. Sadiq's speech on his election as President of the Constituent Assembly, November 1, 1951

G.M. Sadiq was unanimously elected as President of the Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir on November 1, 1951.

Below is transcript of the brief speech he made on his election:

Hon’ble members, it is extremely difficult for me to control my feelings on this occasion as I could do on ordinary occasions. However, I shall try to do so. Before proceeding to acknowledge and reciprocate the good wishes and felicitations extended to me it is necessary for me to thank Moulana Mohammad Sayeed on my behalf and on behalf of this House for occupying the Chair temporarily up till now. The excellent manner in which he discharged his functions during this short period will be guidance to me.

I am highly thankful to the House for the honour it has conferred on me. I know, I am not worthy of all that has been said today in this House about me, although I am overwhelmed with a sense of my own shortcomings, yet the one thing that propose me up is the thought of our twenty years freedom struggle that has put so much courage into our hearts that we do not lose our equilibrium even in the

most difficult and critical time and we succeeded in all our understandings. I am an humble servant of this organization and it animates me to prove myself worthy of all the good things that you have said about me. I know that very difficult and critical times are ahead of this country and especially this House.

As has aptly been put by the leader of the House, Sheri-i-Kashmir, “we have now reached a turning point” and this House is busy in devising plans to cross it safety. We and our organization have faced many turning points and I assure you that some of them were very dangerous but every time we determinedly resolved to surmount these difficulties for the sake of our people and for safeguarding their interests. I am confident that if we keep the traditions of our movement in view we shall easily and sensibly solve the present difficulties as well. Yesterday, when under the leadership of Hon’ble Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, the Hon’ble members of the House were marching through the city in a procession, a man in tatters cried out from amongst the people, “Sheikh Sahib our honour lies in your hands” At that time I felt that the work we were charged with was not an ordinary one. The honour and dignity of this land and all that relates to the welfare of its inhabitants, lies in the hands of this House. This House can make or mar the destiny of this land. We shall have to prove through our efforts that all the desires and hops we have in this House are realized. This is not an ordinary task. The House will have to frame legislation and in addition there are many fundamental matters as involve the lot not only of the present inhabitants of this country but also of the coming generations. This is a life and death question for us.

Today you have assembled here, not in a state when your hands are tied up but you are the members of a sovereign body, enjoying supreme authority; and you have the right to decide, all questions like an independent man. After full deliberations and keeping in view the interests of the country, the principles and desires cherished by us for the past twenty years for which hundreds of people laid down their lives, you have to solve all those issues and all the vital questions that will come before you in the best possible manner. As I have said before much has been said about me on this occasion and it is not possible for me to restrain my feelings.

However, so far as I am concerned, I am your part and parcel, whom you have elected in, supervise the business of the House. It is my duty to see that the dignity and privileges of this House as a whole are kept up. I have also to see that liberty and privilege granted by law and the Constitution to the Hon’ble members of the House individually are protected and acted upon. From today, every member of this House, whether on the treasury benches or in the opposition is equal before me and I shall equally guard his rights and privileges (Cheers). I expect you cooperation in conducting the proceedings of this House rightly and with dignity. I also hope that we shall establish new conventions. As you know the world has its eyes on us. The way we work here will be witnessed not only by those here in the gallery but world’s spacious gallery will keenly watch it. We have to transact our business in a befitting and splendid manner. I reiterate that I am confident of your co-operation. With these words. I thank the Hon’ble members and especially Hon’ble Sher-i-Kashmir, for the speech made by him.


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G.M. Sadiq's speech on his election as President of the Constituent Assembly, November 1, 1951