Supreme Court upholds MP Governor’s decision, asks Kamal Nath govt to hold floor test

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The Supreme Court on Monday upheld Madhya Pradesh Governor Lalji Tandon’s decision asking the then Kamal Nath-led Congress government to prove majority, saying the governor has the power to call for a floor test.

 

The top court was hearing the petition, filed by former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and other BJP leaders, seeking a floor test in Madhya Pradesh Assembly claiming that the Congress-led government in the state has lost the majority.

A bench headed by Justice DY Chandrachud and also comprising Justice Ajay Rastogi passed a verdict in the matter.

On Monday, a bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and Hemant Gupta, in its detailed verdict rejected the submission of the then Kamal Nath government that governor at best can call a session of assembly but cannot direct for holding floor test in the running house.

The apex court, in a 68-page judgment on the powers of Governor, said the floor test was necessary as the government had lost the majority.

On March 19, the Supreme Court had ordered Madhya Pradesh Assembly Speaker NP Prajapati to reconvene a special session the next day with a sole agenda of conducting the floor test.

Following the top court order, Chief Minister Kamal Nath had resigned on March 20, following which Bharatiya Janata Party leader Shivraj Singh Chouhan had taken oath as the new state Chief Minister.

The development had come after 22 Congress MLAs tendered their resignation after Jyotiraditya Scindia, a prominent face of the Congress, resigned and joined the BJP.

The Madhya Pradesh government has a wafer-thin majority in 230-membered House. It has 114 Congress legislators and the support of four Independents, two BSP MLAs and one SP MLA. Meanwhile, the BJP has 107 members. 

However, the resignations of 22 Congress MLAs have reduced the party’s strength to 92, and the government’s support to 99. At present, 24 seats in the Assembly are lying vacant, reducing the size of the House to 206.

 

With inputs from PTI


 

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