HC reserves order on BJP rebels' fate

They cant be whistle-blowers and yet remain in the party: Sorabjee

HC reserves order on BJP rebels' fate

The marathon arguments following the split verdict by the two-judge bench concluded on Wednesday.

Appearing for the Chief Minister and the Speaker, former Attorney General and senior counsel at Supreme Court Soli Sorabjee submitted that the Speaker had based his action of disqualifying the MLAs considering the letter addressed by the MLAs to the Governor, as also the conduct of the MLAs and their activities after they withdrew support to the state government.

“Certain facts are not disputed by the legislators. Never in their petition the members said that the speaker made incorrect statements,” Sorabjee contended.

Withdrawing support to the state government is the collective wisdom of the MLAs, including seven ministers, who were part of the delegation that met the Governor, he argued.

"In the letter addressed to the governor, the MLAs stated that they have withdrawn the support to the government. Therefore, the question of who is the heading the government does not arise and there is sufficient material for the disqualification", Sorabjee said.

Referring to Justice Kumar's view stating that the rebel MLAs are whistle blowers, Sorabjee said: "You cannot be a whistle blower and continue to be in the party."

Another senior counel in the Supreme Court Sathya Pal Jain submitted that the Speaker’s order was in consonance with para 2(1) (a) of the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution. “If you dissent against the chief minister, it is not the case to approach the governor. You have to resign and seek fresh mandate,” Jain submitted. “If the disqualified MLAs remain as the BJP members, why cant they say that we will obey the whip issued by the Party to vote in favour of the government. Till today they have not demonstrated as they belong to the BJP,” submitted Jain. He said the opinion of the second judge (Justice Kumar) is contrary to the judgement of the Supreme Court in the Mayavati case wherein the court upheld the Speaker’s order.

Earlier, continuing his arguments Dr Ravi Varma Kumar said the Speaker’s order was without application of mind and the material relied upon was unreliable. Describing the order as a fraud on power and unsustainable, he said the Speaker adopted double standards and the order was discriminatory in nature as he dealt with Renukacharya and Raju Gowda in a different manner and others have got a different deal.
Justice Sabhahit, after hearing the matter has reserved the orders.

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