CM questions top court’s powers to direct Speaker

Karnataka Chief Minister, H D Kumaraswamy. DH file photo

An embattled Karnataka Chief Minister, H D Kumaraswamy, on Tuesday, questioned the Supreme Court’s authority in asking the Speaker to decide upon the resignation of rebel MLAs within a day and further restraining him from acting on disqualification petitions filed against them.

Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, representing him, contended before a three-judge bench that the court did not have any jurisdiction to pass such orders. He said that there was no scope of judicial review prior to the decision by the Speaker in matters of the rebel MLAs.

He pointed out that this was not a case of an individual MLA. Here the MLAs were “hunting in a pack to bring down the government”.

He said that the Speaker, with his constitutional power under Article 190, has not only to examine the genuineness and voluntary nature of the resignations of the MLAs, but he has to see the intent and, moreover, the motive.

“The only purpose of resignation here is to become ministers. The Speaker can’t be unmindful of all what is happening over there,” Dhavan said.

He said a direction should be issued to all the rebel MLAs to remain present in the Assembly when there would be a debate on the proposed trust vote on Thursday.

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