Supreme Court refuses to restrain 12 Madhya Pradesh insurgent Congress MLAs from ministership

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A Madhya Pradesh Congress legislator’s plea within the Supreme Court to restrain 12 defected Congress lawmakers to proceed as ministers within the Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP govt was rendered infructuous on Wednesday, after the current by-elections to 28 seats allowed these MLAs to contest afresh on BJP ticket.

A 3-judge bench led by CJI SA Bobde dismissed the petition filed by Vinay Saxena, an MLA of the Indian National Congress (INC) from Jabalpur (North) constituency. The petition was filed in March, at a time when the disqualification petitions in opposition to 22 insurgent Congress MLAs (together with the 12 legislators in query) was pending motion with the Speaker of the Madhya Pradesh meeting.

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Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, who appeared for Saxena, knowledgeable the court docket that it was unlucky that regardless of the petition being filed in March, delay in listening to rendered it infructuous. “Those who ought to have been disqualified, no action has been taken even as matters are languishing in courts against their disqualification,” Sibal stated. This was not the lone case, he added, pointing to related pleas languishing within the apex court docket in opposition to defected legislators in Goa, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Twenty-two Congress MLAs who switched sides to affix the BJP led to the downfall of the Kamal Nath govt within the state in March.

“Time is sought by both sides. Even you ask for adjournment,” CJI Bobde remarked, pointing to Sibal.

Bye-elections to 28 vacant seats within the state had been held on November 3, the outcomes of which will probably be declared on November 10.

[Attribution HT]

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