President Pranab Mukherjee on Friday, January 27, accepted the resignation of Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh Governor V Shanmuganathan.
Shanmuganathan had tendered his resignation from the posts on Thursday, January 26, following charges of sexual misconduct against him brought by members of the Meghalaya Raj Bhavan — the governor's official residence — in a letter sent to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The President has also appointed Assam Governor Banwarilal Purohit to discharge the functions of Meghalaya Governor and Nagaland Governor Padmanabha Acharya to discharge the functions of Arunachal Pradesh Governor.
It will be in addition to their duties until regular arrangements for the offices of Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh governors are made.
Shanmuganathan was appointed as the Governor of Meghalaya in May 2015. The 67-year-old, who hails from Tamil Nadu, also held the additional charge as Governor of Arunachal Pradesh since September 2016.
Meghalaya has of late seen sex scandals in quick succession. MLA Julius Dorphang was arrested earlier this month for raping a minor girl twice. However, in the case of Shanmuganathan — an RSS member and a political appointee of the BJP — the resignation was prompted by a letter sent to Modi and copies of it sent to President Pranab Mukherjee, the Prime Minister's Office, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Meghalaya Chief Minister Mukul Sangma.
In the letter, the 80-odd staff members of the Raj Bhavan have written about Shanmuganathan: "He has seriously compromised the dignity of the Raj Bhavan and made it a young ladies' club. 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."
Shanmuganathan had been accused of appointing only young girls to some posts, like "two public relations officers, a cook and a nurse on night duty, all of whom are women." He has also reportedly appointed only young women to work with him, and shifted a male private secretary to the secretariat office.