‘Cen­tre Didn’t Fol­low Prez Rule Norms’

Thurs­day’s Ut­tarak­hand HC ver­dict, stayed by SC, says not enough ma­te­rial for im­pos­ing cen­tral rule

The Economic Times - - Pure Politics -

New Delhi: The Ut­tarak­hand HC — that set aside Pres­i­dent’s rule in the state last Thurs­day and the writ­ten ver­dict of which was avail­able on Mon­day — has come down heav­ily on the Cen­tre. Say­ing, “the govern­ment, when it takes ac­tion un­der Ar­ti­cle 356, is ex­pected to be com­pletely non-par­ti­san,” the HC ruled that the Cen­tre im­posed pres­i­dent’s rule, “con­trary to the law laid down by the apex court” and dubbed the ma­te­rial for im­pos­ing the pres­i­dent’s rule, as “want­ing”.

Ques­tion­ingth­e­mo­tiveof the­Cen­tre,a divi­sion bench headed by Chief Jus­tice KM Joseph has ques­tioned the de­ci­sion taken by the Cabi­net on March 26. The 100 paged judg­ment also ques­tioned the ma­te­rial the Union Cabi­net re­lied upon in im­pos­ing pres­i­dent’s rule.

The­courthasques­tione­donwhat­ba­sis the Cabi­net re­lied on dis­qual­i­fi­ca­tion of nine dis­si­dent MLAs as on the night (of March 26) when the Cabi­net met, the MLAs were not yet dis­qual­i­fied by the Speaker. “As­sum­ing for a mo­ment that they could di­vine what was com­ing inthe­wayof 9dis­si­dent MLAs, we would think that it is com­pletely ir­rel­e­vant for the cen­tral govern­ment to weigh it in the scales for de­cid­ing to im­pose Pres­i­dent’s rule”.

Rul­ing the ma­te­rial was not rel­e­vant for im­pos­ing pres­i­dent’s rule, the bench said, “what would hap­pen to the mem­bers of the Congress party for their al­leged acts or omis­sions is en­trusted to the con­sti­tu­tional func­tionary, namely the Speaker, to de­cide. What will hap­pen if they are dis­qual­i­fied and, there­fore, what would be the com­po­si­tion of the House on March 28 when the floor test would take place, surely could not have been the look­out of the cen­tral govern­ment.”

The bench ex­pressed shock over one of the grounds men­tioned by the Ut­tarak­hand gov­er­nor in his let­ter to the Pres­i­dent ad­vo­cat­ing pres­i­dent’s rule. The gov­er­nor in his let­ter dated March 26 men­tioned about the re­moval of the AG, who is re­lated to one of the dis­si­dents and dis­missal of a min­is­ter.

What would hap­pen to Congress mem­bers for their al­leged acts is en­trusted to Speaker to de­cide

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