Amid intense jockeying for power and allegations of horse-trading, Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala on May 16 invited the BJP’s B.S. Yeddyurappa to form the government in the State, prompting the Congress to move the Supreme Court. The court has said that it will not stay the swearing-in, but will make it subject to the outcome of the case.
Earlier on Wednesday, the Janata Dal (Secular)-Congress combine and the BJP submitted the list of MLAs supporting them. The JD(S) and the BJP have also completed the process of electing the leaders of their respective Legislature Parties. The day also saw the JD(S) accusing the BJP of indulging in horse-trading, which the latter dismissed as imagination.
Karnataka returned a hung Assembly on May 15 with the BJP winning in 104 seats, Congress 78 and the JD(S) 37, from the 222 constituencies that went to the polls. In a dramatic turn of events, the Congress offered support to the JD(S), which was duly accepted by party leader H.D. Kumaraswamy.
The Supreme Court says that Mr. Yeddyurappa’s swearing-in as Chief Minister of Karnataka today will not be stayed. But it will be “subject to outcome of petition here or further orders.”
The SC also asks the Attorney-General to produce the May 15 and May 16 letters given to the Governor by Mr. Yeddyurappa staking his claim to form the government. The case will now be taken up at 10.30 a.m. on Friday.
“It stands to reason that we cannot injunct a party [the Governor] we cannot summon here,” says Justice Bobde. “You cannot injunct a party you cannot issue notice to. Injunction is always against a person. You can but stay his order.”
“If a Governor dared to make a one-man party CM, we cannot injunct the CM from taking oath. But we can stay his government from functioning,” says Justice Bobde
The Goa parallel
“In Goa, Digambar Kamat of Congress never made a claim. Manohar Parrikar of BJP made his claim and was invited to form the government,” says Mr. Rohatgi.
Mr. Rohatgi again questions the urgency of the hearing. “In Yakub Memon, I argued from 2 a.m. to 5 a.m because the man was going to be hanged at 6 a.m. Here what is the urgency? The question of 15 days for the floor test can be decided in the next 2 or 3 days.”
To this Anoop Chaudhary responds, “Here Constitution is going to be hanged.”
Source: The Hindu