- SC seeks invitation from Governor, support for Fadnavis
Delhi: In a major development with regard to Maharashtra government formation, on Sunday morning, the Supreme Court directed Solicitor General Tushar Mehta to produce two letters in the court on Monday, including from the Governor, inviting BJP to form government and another about support being extended to Devendra Fadnavis.
The three-judge bench of Justices N. V. Ramana, Ashok Bhushan, and Sanjiv Khanna, was hearing a writ petition filed by Shiv Sena, Congress and the NCP against “arbitrary, malafide actions/ decisions” of Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, inviting BJP to form the government on Saturday.
While issuing the notice to Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Ajit Pawar, Union of India and State of Maharashtra, the apex court said that the appropriate order shall be passed at 10:30am on Monday.
Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing the three parties in alliance along with Abhishek Manu Singhvi, opened the arguments with an apology for the hearing on a Sunday and said “but we are not the only ones to blame.”
Both, Sibal and Singhvi urged the Court to order for an immediate floor test citing example of the Karnataka government formation last year.
During the hearing, Sibal said, “It is bizarre that on Saturday at 5.47am the President’s Rule was revoked and in less than three hours Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar were sworn in.”
He also questioned the steps taken by Maharashtra’s Governor for inviting Fadnavis-led BJP to form the government. He said, “It appears that the Governor is acting under the orders of a political party. The act of the Governor smacks of bias and contrary to established norms.”
Meanwhile, Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for BJP MLAs and independents, sought some time from the court.
“For so many days they didn’t raise a finger to form the government and now someone else has formed the government. No doubt, that floor test is inevitable, but the decisions of the Governor are not subject to judicial review.”
After the arguments concluded, the apex court asked for the letters in connection with formation of the government.