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SC to Maharashtra speaker: Defer call on disqualification pleas

  • Sun Online Desk
  • 12th July, 2022 04:35:50 PM
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SC to Maharashtra speaker: Defer call on disqualification pleas

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Maharashtra assembly speaker to defer fratricidal disqualification proceedings initiated by rival Shiv Sena factions against each other after Eknath Shinde-led 39 MLAs rebelled to dismantle the Uddhav Thackeray-headed MVA government.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal and Devadatt Kamat told a bench of Chief Justice N V Ramana and Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli that the speaker should be restrained from taking a decision on the disqualification petitions pending before him and conceded that no MLA from either faction of Sena should be disqualified till the apex court decided multiple petitions filed by both sides.

An SC bench headed by Chief Justice N V Ramana said on Monday it would take some time to assign the bunch of pending petitions related to the Maharashtra political imbroglio to an appropriate bench. The pending petitions had been scheduled to be listed on Monday for detailed hearing as per the orders of a vacation bench headed by Justice Surya Kant.

On disqualification proceedings initiated by rival Sena factions against each other, the CJI told solicitor general Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Maharashtra governor, to convey to the speaker not to proceed with the disqualification proceedings pending before him till further orders.

Among the petitions pending in SC, the first was by Eknath Shinde and 16 of 39 rebel MLAs who were given disqualification notices when they refused to attend Sena's meeting after rebelling against Thackeray's leadership.

The vacation bench had asked the then deputy speaker not to proceed with the disqualification proceedings and allowed the trust vote to take place. Repeated petitions were filed by the Thackeray-led faction through its former chief whip Sunil Prabhu seeking disqualification of the rebel MLAs. It was followed by a fresh petition by the Thackeray faction through Subhash Desai, challenging the governor's decision to invite Shinde to form the government after he claimed support of BJP.

Source: Times of India/TNN