Supreme Court:  After hearing the Congress-NCP-Shiv Sena’s plea today against the decision of the Maharashtra Governor inviting Devendra Fadnavis to form the Government for 2 days, the 3-judge bench of N.V. Ramana, Ashok Bhushan and Sanjiv Khanna, JJ has said that it will pronounce the verdict tomorrow.

The Governor’s order on November 23, inviting Fadnavis to form a government & correspondence/letter of Fadnavis to the Governor claiming majority was produced before the Court today.

Submissions before the Court on Day 2 of the hearing:

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta:

  • Maharashtra governor was cognizant of facts, situation after polls results that had led to invoking of President rule in state
  • After being assured that no party was in position to form government in Maha, governor recommended President rule in state
  • Maharashta Governor had invited Shiv Sena, BJP and NCP for government formation, President’s rule was imposed only after they failed
  • Governor not supposed to conduct roving, fishing inquiry to ascertain which party has numbers to form Government
  • Question is can a party come, seek court’s intervention to hold floor test within 24 hours
  • Nobody is disputing that floor test is ultimate test, no party can say it has to be conducted in 24 hours
  • Particular time frame cannot be asked to be implemented on mere apprehension of particular party
  • Grant us 2-3 days’ time. Let us file reply

Advocate Mukul Rohatgi appearing for BJP

  • Ajit Pawar had support of 54 NCP MLAs so governor asked him to form Government
  • It’s nobody’s case that letters have been forged, Maharashtra governor acted correctly so it is end of their case
  • Now question is can this court say whether floor test can be ordered within a particular time frame
  • Governor’s action, calling a party to form government, is immune from judicial review
  • Matter fraught with serious consequences, governor’s discretionary power cannot be judicially reviewed
  • 5-judge bench supposed to examine power of Speaker in such matters
  • No case for grant of interim order has been made out by Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress
  • Procedures of assembly like pro-tem speaker cannot be interfered with
  • Shiv Sena, NCP, Cong are asking SC to decide how Governor and Assembly should act. Parties are seeking direction to governor, who is immune, to act as per their wishes
  • Court cannot interfere with House procedure regulated by Assembly rules

Kapil Sibal, appearing for Shiv Sena

  • Where was national emergency to revoke President’s rule at 5.27 am and CM being administered oath at 8 am next morning
  • If BJP has numbers, then they be asked to prove majority within 24 hours

Sr. Adv. A M Singhvi appearing for Sharad Pawar’s NCP and Congress

  • It’s fraud of worst kind, did a single NCP MLA tell Ajit Pawar that he supported him to go with BJP
  • Both sides agree that floor test is ultimate, BJP does not want it quickly
  • If BJP has majority, why is it worried? I am happy to lose on floor of Maharashtra Assembly

The Court asked Sr. Adv. A M Singhvi appearing for Sharad Pawar’s NCP and Congress to withdraw fresh plea with affidavits of 154 Maha MLAs supporting combine as it has not been supplied to BJP. It said,

“Whatever you file in court, you need to give to other side”

AM Singhvi withdrew the plea and said that he was as referring to affidavits of 154 Maha MLAs to shock court’s conscience that majority was with them.

(Source: PTI)

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